Following a year without the joy of viewing art in person, galleries and museums have reopened their doors to the public. In April Mayfair's private galleries reopened and now the jewel in the district, the Royal Academy of Arts has also been able to begin physical exhibitions once more. To celebrate its reopening, it is hosting some of the best exhibitions from across the country. Here is a selection to choose from.
DAVID HOCKNEY: THE ARRIVAL OF SPRING, NORMANDY, 2020
In the midst of a pandemic, David Hockney RA captured the unfolding of spring on his iPad, creating 116 new and optimistic works in praise of the natural world. Each work – which has been printed far larger than the screen on which it was created – allows you to see every mark and stroke of the artist’s hand.
Made in the spring of 2020, during a period of intense activity at his home in Normandy, this exhibition opens exactly a year after the works were made during the global pandemic and will be a reminder of the constant renewal and wonder of the natural world – and the beauty of spring.
Exhibition runs 23rd May — 26th September 2021.
TRACEY EMIN / EDVARD MUNCH: THE LONELINESS OF THE SOUL
In this landmark exhibition, Tracey Emin selects masterpieces by Edvard Munch to show alongside her most recent paintings. The exhibition features more than 25 of Emin’s works including paintings, some of which will be on display for the first time, as well neons and sculpture. These works, which explore the loneliness of the soul, have been chosen by Emin to sit alongside a carefully considered selection of 18 oils and watercolours drawn from Norwegian expressionist and painter of The Scream, Munch.
Exhibition runs 18th May — 1st August 2021.
MICHAEL ARMITAGE: PARADISE EDICT
Michael Armitage is a Kenyan-born artist whose colourful, dreamlike paintings challenge cultural assumptions, exploring politics, history, civil unrest and sexuality. Made using Lubugo bark cloth, a culturally important material made of tree bark by the Baganda people in Uganda, many of his large-scale works draw on contemporary events, combining these with Western painting motifs. Just over 10 years since Armitage graduated from the Royal Academy Schools this exhibition brings together 15 of his large-scale paintings.
Exhibition runs 22nd May — 19th September 2021.