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LONDON FOR FUN Newsletter: 05 January 2010 Issue No.188



1.) Top 10 London events
2.) Other Events, Theatre listings, Museums and Galleries
3.) How to unsubscribe


1. Top 10 London events

1 - Pop Life: Art in a Material World - "Good business is the best art" Andy Warhol once provocatively claimed. Tate Modern's hit autumn exhibition Pop Life examines how artists since the 1980s have cultivated their public persona as a product, and conjured a dazzling mix of media, commerce and glamour to build their own 'brands'. Beginning with the grandfather of Pop, Andy Warhol, the show includes Jeff Koons' infamous Made in Heaven series and his stainless steel Rabbit sculpture, an iconic array of golden spot and butterfly paintings from Damien Hirst's recordbreaking 2008 auction, and a reconstruction of Keith Haring's Pop Shop in New York. Also included will be works by Richard Prince, Martin Kippenberger, and the notorious YBAs, and a new commission by Takashi Murakami. Until 17 January. www.tate.org.uk/modern

2 - Visible Invisible: Against the Security of the Real - The works in this exhibition do not represent perceived reality per se, rather they hover somewhere between figuration and abstraction. They are therefore rich in suggestive possibilities and ultimately provide some insight into thefeelings and emotions these artists experienced while creating their works. Understandably, the inspiration for and resulting works of each artist are distinctly different, but seen together their works share an indisputable material presence and an intriguing dynamism that prompts an active exchange between viewer and art work. Some of the artists, such as Brown, Moran and Schoorel, depart from existing imagery, while Josephsohn, the only sculptor in this exhibition, and McDowell work directly from the perceptible world and nature. Until 7 February. www.parasol-unit.org

3 - Kienholz: The Hoerengracht - ‘The Hoerengracht’ (1983–8), by American artists Ed and Nancy Kienholz, will transform the Sunley Room into a walk-through evocation of Amsterdam’s red-light district. This highly polemical tableau explores a theme that has been investigated by artists over many centuries and echoes visual traditions well established within European art. Recalling in particular the Dutch masters of the 17th century, which are strongly represented in the National Gallery, ‘The Hoerengracht’ recreates the brick walls, glowing windows and mysterious doorways of Amsterdam’s claustrophobic streets. At the same time, the half-dressed, garishly lit mannequins of ‘The Hoerengracht’ reveal a theatre of grim sociology, filled with the most vulgar, ugly and ramshackle aspects of society. Until 21 February. www.nationalgallery.org.uk

4 - Points of View: Capturing the 19th century in photographs - From the first tentative ‘drawings of shadows’ produced in the mid-1830s to its universal acceptance as a leisure pursuit, photography was swept along by a tide of entrepreneurial activity throughout the 19th century. Organised by subject matter, the exhibition asks: 'Who was taking the photograph and why?' Section by section, items are presented within their cultural context to explore some of the major themes of the 19th century – from expansion to industrialisation, science, and the rapid changes taking place in society. The final section reveals how technology responded to the demands of a developing mass market for photography, which continues to the present day. Until 7 March. www.bl.uk

5 - Romeo and Juliet - Kenneth MacMillan’s interpretation of Romeo and Juliet’s doomed love is one of the greatest examples of 20th-century choreography. This revival by The Royal Ballet brings all the lyrical beauty and touching fluidity of its intimate moments for the two lovers along with the grandeur of the ball scene and the action-packed encounters of the opposing Montagues and Capulets. Beautifully staged with rich period costumes and designs, Romeo and Juliet will draw you into its intense drama with some of the finest of today’s dancers matched to the powerful sounds of Prokofiev’s famous music. This is a wonderful chance for you to experience one of the enduring tragic tales of all time, a classic of the international ballet repertory and a favourite of Royal Ballet audiences. From 12 January until 16 March. Buy tickets

6 - Where Three Dreams Cross: 150 Years of Photography from India, Pakistan and Bangladesh - This landmark exhibition gives an inside view of how modern India, Pakistan and Bangladesh have been shaped through the lens of their photographers. From the days when the first Indian-run photographic studios were established in the 19th century, this exhibition tells the story of photography’s development in the subcontinent with over 400 works that have  been brought together for the first time. It encompasses social realism and reportage of key political moments in the 1940s, amateur snaps from the 1960s and street photography from the 1970s. Contemporary photographs reveal the reality of everyday life, while the recent digitalisation of image making accelerates its cross-over with fashion and film. From 21 January until 11 April. www.whitechapel.org

7 - The Bloomberg Commission: Goshka Macuga: The Nature of the Beast - Goshka Macuga is widely acclaimed for her sculptural installations of artefacts and photographs, derived from art history, politics and anthropology. The artist focuses on a key moment in the history of the Whitechapel Gallery: the presentation of Picasso’s Guernica in 1939. Organised in collaboration with the Stepney Trade Union Council in east London to raise awareness of the Spanish Civil War, the suggested price of entry was a pair of boots, left underneath the work, to be sent to the Republicans in Spain. Forming the centrepiece of Macuga’s installation is a life-size tapestry of Guernica. Macuga’s project draws connections across historic and contemporary world affairs, their protagonists and the cultural ripple effects they have triggered. Until 18 April. www.whitechapel.org

8 - Deutsche Börse Photography Prize 2010 - The Deutsche Börse Photography Prize rewards a living photographer, of any nationality, who has made the most significant contribution, in exhibition or publication format, to the medium of photography over the previous year. From 12 February until 18 April. www.photonet.org.uk

9 - The Real Van Gogh: The Artist and His Letters - In January 2010, the Royal Academy of Arts will stage a landmark exhibition of the work of Vincent van Gogh (1853–1890). The focus of the exhibition will be the artist’s remarkable correspondence. Over 35 original letters, rarely exhibited to the public due to their fragility, will be on display in the main galleries of Burlington House, together with around 65 paintings and 30 drawings that express the principal themes to be found within the correspondence. Thus the exhibition will offer a unique opportunity to gain an insight into the complex mind of Vincent van Gogh. This will be the first major Van Gogh exhibition in London for over forty years. From 23 January until 18 April. www.royalacademy.org.uk

10 - Chris Ofili - Chris Ofili’s intensely coloured and intricately ornamented paintings are on show at Tate Britain in a major survey of the artist’s career that brings together over 45 paintings, as well as pencil drawings and watercolours from the mid 1990s to today. Ofili has built an international reputation with his works that bridge the sacred and the profane, popular culture and beliefs. His exuberant paintings are renowned for their rich layering and inventive use of media, including balls of elephant dung that punctuate the canvas and support them at their base, as well as glitter, resin, map pins and magazine cut-outs. From 27 January until 16 May. www.tate.org.uk


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