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Culture

17 Excellent Exhibitions In London That Aren’t All About Art

By Holly Platt-Higgins

17 Excellent Exhibitions In London That Aren’t All About Art

Feast your eyes on something other than Picasso at these incredible exhibitions.

We all know that London is jam-packed with amazing art exhibitions, but what if neither watercolours nor ink wash are your bag? What if neither Monet nor Van Gogh get you going? Where are you suppose to head if you haven’t got the head for art?

Well, never fear, because we just happen to have a list of the very best exhibitions happening in London this year, which have absolutely nothing to do with art. That’s right people, it’s all about music, muffs and moccasins from here on out.

1. Dialogue in the Dark

This blockbuster exhibition has already welcomed over 10 million visitors around the world, but it’s arrived in London to take us out of our comfort zones and on an immersive sensory journey. Dialogue in the Dark is a pitch-black exhibition, where you’ll be guided by the blind or visually impaired. Ultimately, you’ll experience everyday settings without the use of your senses and you’ll leave with a totally different perspective. Tickets are half-price throughout January, so now is the best time to visit. Find out more here. ⭐️ Sponsored. ⭐️

📍 Where: 129-131 Mare Street, Hackney

🗓 When: Open now

2. Beazley Designs of the Year Exhibition

design-exhibition-featureFirst up on our list is the Beazley Design of the Year Exhibition. Nominated by the public and internationally renowned design experts, the museum will be showcasing the very best developments in design across fashion, architecture, transport and so much more.

Discover the best innovations and inventions from the past 12 months; all of which aim to champion accessibility and global impact. Representing and inspiring change in their respective fields, this event is not to be missed by any self-proclaimed blueprint boffins! Book your tickets here.

📍 Where: The Design Museum

🗓 When: Open now / Closes 9th February 2020

3. Mary Quant Exhibition

Photo: V&A

Winged eyeliner, big hair, small skirts, and even smaller waists, these are the things that characterised women’s fashion in the Swinging Sixties. But who was behind it all? The revolutionary Mary Quant, of course! Discover how one woman transformed the nation from humble housewives to style icons. This exhibition is simply a must visit for any firm fashionista. Book tickets here.

📍 Where: The V&A

🗓  When: Open now / Closes 16th February 2020

4. Moving to Mars Exhibition

Fancy heading to Mars without actually leaving London? Well, look no further, earthlings. The Design Museum’s new, multi-sensory exhibition is waiting to take you on the trip of a life time. Featuring immersive environments, a full-scale Mars home and objects contributed by NASA, the European Space Agency and SpaceX, you’re sure to feel out of this world as soon as you step inside the Moving to Mars exhibition. Explore untouched landscapes, admire Christopher Raeburn’s intergalactic collection, and experience a life beyond the globe you know; all from the safety of Kensington High Street. Far more interesting than an oil painting, don’t you think? Get your tickets here.

📍 Where: The Design Museum

🗓 When: Open now / Closes 23rd February 2020

5. Top Secret: From Ciphers to Cyber Security Exhibition

Codebreaker
Photo: The Science Museum

If you’re keen on cracking codes and curious about communication, then you’re sure to be impressed with the The Science Museum’s new exhibition: Top Secret. Ranging from the First World War to today’s sophisticated cyber security systems, this exhibition traces the evolution of the devices we use to deceive and decode. Book your tickets here! 

📍 Where: The Science Museum

🗓  When: Open now / Closes 23rd February 2020

6. Body Worlds London Exhibition

body-worlds-london-exhibition

Described by many as ‘incredible’, ‘unforgettable’ and even ‘life-changing’, we don’t really need to do much to hype up this next exhibition. Body Worlds London has swiftly become one of the city’s top tourist attractions and we’re here to tell you why.

Offering a unique blend of science, curation and health education, Body Worlds showcases over 200 jaw-dropping exhibits of real human bodies; all of which tell the story of the mind, the body and the soul. Discover the beauty of your inner body here.

📍 Where: Body Worlds London, Piccadilly Circus

🗓 When: Open now / Closes 29th Febuary 2020

7. Muff Busters

Photo: Camden Market

If you know more about vajazzles than vulvas, you ought to stop fannying about and get yourself down to the the Muff Busters exhibition in Camden! Here, fabulous director Florence Schechter is on a mission to clear up all the confusion and debunk the myths about the downstairs area no one seems to be talking about. Click here to find out more! 

📍 Where: Vagina Museum

🗓 When: Open now / Closes 29th March 2020

8. The Clash: London Calling

Photo: Museum of London

Paying homage to one of the greatest albums the world has ever seen, the Museum of London’s new exhibition explores The Clash’s legendary London Calling. A defining moment for Londoners, punks and pretty much everyone else on the planet, there’s no question whether you should stay or go to this exhibition. Feast your eyes on never-before-seen artefacts—like Paul Simon’s smashed Fender and Joe Strummer’s notebook—and enjoy basking in the fond memory one of the century’s musical highlights. Find out more here!

📍 Where: Museum of London

🗓 When: Open now / Closes 20th March 2020

9. Unfinished Business: The Fight For Women’s Rights

Calling all Nasty Women! If you feel like you’ve got some unfinished business with the way the world looks at you, then you better head down to The British Library for this exhibition, which takes an unflinching look at the world’s fight for women rights so far.

Packed with empowerment, oozing with inspirational stories, and stuffed with a whole lot of sisterhood, you’re sure to enjoy the sense of solidarity which pulses through this entire exhibition. Book your tickets here.

📍 Where: The British Library.

🗓 When: Open now / Closes 31st August 2020

10. ABBA: Super Troupers The Exhibition

abba-exhibitionMamma Mia, does this looks good! Calling all ABBA fans, it’s here, it’s time. This amazing new exhibition at the O2 brings to life the world of the chart-topping Swedish-pop-sensation, ABBA.

Featuring objects that have never been displayed in the UK before, this unique interpretation of the band’s journey takes visitors and fans into the true heart of their unforgettable story. Lovingly documenting the music, lyrics, creative process and influences of the most iconic pop bands of the modern age, it’s really worthtaking a chance on this one! Get your tickets here.

📍 Where: The O2

🗓 When: Open now / Closes 31st August 2020

11. Tribute Ink

tattoo-exhibitions
Photo: National Army Museum

Impressed by ink? Well then, the National Army Museum’s new exhibition is the place for you. Tribute Ink explores and uncovers the emotional, courageous and unbelievable stories behind some of the biggest and best tattoos in the armed forces. From sailers to soldiers, mothers to memorials there are hundreds of stories of sacrifice and comradeship to be discovered. Find out more here. 

📍 Where: National Army Museum

🗓 When: Opens 31st January 2020 / Closes 17th April 2020

12. Out of the Blue: Fifty Years of Designer’s Guild

Photo: Designers Guild

What started out as just a little section of a shop on the King’s Road, has gradually grown into one of the country’s most influential interiors companies. Lead by OBE Tricia Guild, Designer’s Guild is now celebrating its 50th year of business and thankfully, the Fashion and Textile Museum have decided to commemorate this momentous occasion! Explore a world of colour and creativity, patterns and unprecedented living spaces in this exquisite new exhibition. Click to find out more!

📍 Where: Fashion and Textile Museum

🗓 When: Opens 14th February / Closes 14th June 2020

13. Kimono: Kyoto to Catwalk

v-and-a-exhibitions
Photo: The V&A

The V&A’s fashion exhibitions are always ridiculously popular and we reckon this one will be no different! Presenting the history, cultural significance and evolution of the kimono, this exhibition offers visitors a dynamic understanding of the iconic garment.

Step into a world of flare, fashion and fabric as you explore the incredible journey the kimono has taken from the 17th Century to the present day. Pre-book your tickets here!

📍 Where: The V&A.

🗓 When: Opens 29th February 2020 / Closes 21st June 2020

14. Electronic

music-exhibition

For all you thrill-seekers and club-junkies out there, we guarantee that the upcoming Electronic exhibition at The Design Museum is going to be right up your dark and vomit-covered street.

Creating an immersive experience, complete with light displays, 3D installations and a whole lot of sound, this exhibition will take you through the energised and mesmerising development of electric music. Click here to get your tickets. 

📍 Where: The Design Museum

🗓 When: Opens 1st April / Closes 26th July 2020

15. Bronze Mystery: Havering Hoard

bronze-exhibition
Photo: Museum of London

The Museum of London’s upcoming exhibition, Bronze Mystery: Havering Hoard, showcases the largest ever Bronze Age hoard to be discovered in the city, and we have to say, it looks pretty incredible.

From axe-heads to artefacts that have been hidden away for hundreds of years, this exhibition is packed full of phenomenal forgotten fragments. Sure to give you a whole load of insight into how the world looked before you set foot on it, this exhibition will be an absolute hotspot for history fanatics. Find out more here!

📍 Where: Museum of London

🗓 When: Opens 3rd April / Closes 1st November 2020

16. Bags: Inside Out

handbag-exhibition
Photo: V&A

Whether you have just one old faithful or a few wardrobes packed full of them, bags are undeniably the ultimate accessory. In this utterly gorgeous exhibition, the V&A are exploring it all; from backpacks to Birkins, clutches to all of the different types of clasps, there is no end to the weird and wonderful collection being showcased in this exhibition.

Featuring pieces form Louis Vuitton, Karl Lagerfeld and Emily Job Gibbs, you better be quick if you want to bag a ticket! Click here to keep an eye out.

📍 Where: The V&A.

🗓 When: Opens 25th April / Closes 3rd January 2021

17. Alice: Curiouser and Curiouser

Alice-in-wonderland-exhibition
Photo: V&A

Venture down the rabbit hole and into the V&A’s upcoming Curiouser and Curiouser exhibition. Equally mysterious and magical, explore Alice’s immersive world and discover how, over the last 157 years, Alice in Wonderland has transformed from hurried manuscript scrawlings into a global sensation. Don’t be late for this very important date. Click here to catch a ticket!

📍 Where: The V&A

🗓 When: Opens 27th June 2020 / Closes 10th January 2020