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5 Must-See Art Exhibitions this August

Matisse in the Studio at The Royal Academy of Arts:

If you have ever been eager to step into the creative realm of influential artist Henri Matisse, look no further than the upcoming Matisse in the Studio exhibit at the Royal Academy of Arts.

The exhibit aims to recreate the environment Matisse himself had immersed himself in when creating some of his most iconic pieces. By taking some of Matisse’s own personal items (which helped form his own expansive repertoire) and pairing them with over 65 of his own works, you will be able to witness the numerous influences that some of these African, Buddhist and Oriental items have had on his own artwork.

Be warned, however, this exhibit will set you back a fair bit and is on the pricier end of this list. If you are at all interested, be sure to book quickly as this exhibit is in high demand.

Starting: August 5th (through to the 12th of November 2017) at the Royal Academy of Arts, Burlington House, London

Price: £15.50 (£10.00 for Students)


​Into the Unknown:

A Journey Through Science Fiction at The Barbican

For a more flexible exhibit format, Into the Unknown: A Journey Through Science Fiction allows audiences to walk through selected chapters (curated by historian Patrick Gyger) that helped define the genre of Science Fiction.

Expect to see not only pieces from artists like Ray Harryhausen, Ralph McQuarrie, and James Gurney, but also excerpts from influential texts by authors like Arthur C Clarke and, naturally, clips and models from films such as Star Wars, District 9 and Blade Runner. With over 800 works (some of which never before seen in the UK) this exhibit offers a look into the bold world of Sci-Fi for novices and enthusiast alike.

Starting: 3rd of June (through to the 1st of September 2017) at the Barbican Centre, Silk Street London

Price: £14.50 (£12.00 for Students)


Edmund Clark: War of Terror at The Imperial War Museum

Explore a series of accounts surrounding the concept of state-control in this stimulating and provocative exhibition by artist and photographer Edmund Clark at the Imperial War Museum.

If you are interested in issues of security, militia, and general authority- then this exhibition offers up insight into the measures taken to protect the state and its people from terrorism (and the ripple effects of these means to achieve control).

The series focuses on multiple areas of Clark’s work such as his photography from detention camps such as Guantanamo Bay, documentation of CIA operations, and audio-visual installations that invoke feelings of disorientation, acute surveillance, and detention.

Starting: Currently on (Until the 28th of August 2017) at the Imperial War Museum, Lambeth Road

Price: Free


Balenciaga: Shaping Fashion at

The Victoria and Albert Museum

A powerhouse of fashion and design, couturier Cristóbal Balenciaga’s legacy and influence are captured in the UK’s first exhibition of his work at the Victoria and Albert Museum.

Over 100 pieces crafted by Balenciaga and his protégées are currently on display, alongside conceptual sketches, fabric swatches and photographs detailing the Spanish designer’s artistry that so strongly influenced 1950s and 60s haute couture. This exhibit is well worth visiting for Balenciaga fans and fashion enthusiasts in general.

Starting: Currently on (until the 18th of February 2018) at the Victoria and Albert Museum, Cromwell Road, South Kensington

Price: £12.00


Cerith Wyn Evans: The Tate Britain Commission 2017

For a more non-committal approach to exhibitions with ample flexibility to explore other aspects of the museum, the Cerith Wyn Evans commission for Tate Britain is perfect for individuals less invested in specific artists.

The installation, titled Forms in Space…by Light (in Time), is a 2km long assembly of neon lights, suspended masterfully from the ceiling into experimental and visually stimulating forms that illustrate the trajectory of configurations, footsteps, and movement. This is an installation that is easily stumbled upon by more casual museum goers as they explore the various permanent pieces available at the Tate.

For more installations at Tate Britain be sure to check out Queer British Art 1861-1967 which is available until the 1st of October 2017.

Starting: Currently on (Until the 20th of August) at the Tate Britain, Millbank, Westminster

Price: Free

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