7 Astonishing New Art Exhibitions You Have To See In London In 2016

Tabby Powell-Tuck Tabby Powell-Tuck


If you’re an art-lover then fasten those seat-belts, you’re in for one hell of a year. Between now and March there are some absolute must-see art exhibitions in London. So book your tickets in advance, open those eyes wide and prepare to be amazed. 2016 is looking pretty dreamy.


1. Champagne Life at the Saatchi Gallery


To mark the Saatchi gallery’s 30th birthday, they’re holding their first ever all-women exhibitions. It’s set to be one of the most exciting exhibitions for 2016, showcasing new and arresting work by 14 emerging, international female artists.

13th January – 6th March

Saatchi Gallery, Chelsea


2. Painting the Modern Garden: Monet to Matisse at the Royal Academy of Arts


Using the work of Monet as its starting point, this groundbreaking exhibition traces the role that gardens played in the development of art from the early 1860s to the 1920s. Discover the paintings of some of the most important Impressionist, Post-Impressionist and Avant-Garde artists of the early twentieth century. And who doesn’t love a Monet? Booking essential.

30 January – 20 April 

Royal Academy of Arts, Mayfair 


3. Vogue 100: A Century of Style at National Portrait Gallery

One for the fashionistas, this 100 year retrospective celebrates the history of the fashion bible British Vogue. The show will include early original magazines, vintage prints and Condé Nast archival material, as well as featuring work from some of the fashion world’s most influential photographers. Prepare to enter the magical world of one of the most successful publications of all time.

11 February – 22 May 

National Portrait Gallery, Leicester Square  


4. Delacroix and the Rise of Modern Art at the National Gallery

[Philadelphia Museum of Art]
In the National Gallery’s first blockbuster of the year, the influence of Delacroix on his contemporaries and subsequent generations of artists is explored. Expect drama, sensuality, sex and violence. In other words, expect the unexpected.

17 February – 22 May

National Gallery, Trafalgar Square 


5. Performing for the Camera at Tate Modern

[Masahisa Fukasi Archives]
In a world that is becoming increasingly marked by selfie culture, this 2016 Tate Modern Blockbuster exploring self-identity and self-expression will certainly strike a chord with the modern day viewer. Expect innovative approaches to portraiture from the likes of such pioneers as Lee Friedlander, Hannah Wilke, Samuel Fosso and Cindy Sherman. It’s going to be a biggie.

18 February – 12 June 

Tate Modern, Southbank 


6. Botticelli Reimagined at the V&A

[David LaChapelle]
It’s the one everyone has been talking about. The Renaissance master of mythological beauties, Botticelli, is the focus of this inspiring exhibition at the Victoria & Albert museum. Proving the timeless influence of his work, countless portraits of the Medici patrons will be exhibited alongside works by René Magritte, Andy Warhol and Cindy Sherman. The show will bring together the largest number of Botticelli’s we’ve ever seen under one roof in London – it’s not to be missed.

5 March – 3 July 

Victoria and Albert Museum, South Kensington 


7. Strange and Familiar at the Barbican Centre

[Tina Barney, Paul Kasmin Gallery]
If you’re after something that will make you smile, look no further than Martin Parr’s excellently curated show that looks at how international photographers have captured the shifting social, cultural and political identity of the UK through the camera lens. Wacky, weird and wonderful sightings all in one room? Here’s to us, Brits.

16 March – 19 June 

Barbican Centre, Barbican

Feature Image Credit: Flickr Maurice 

Tags: art, galleries