West Africa: Word, Symbol, Song
Literature and music from Western African empires of the Middle Ages to West Africa today.
“Beautiful manuscripts, historic film and sound recordings, books, photographs, and woven and printed textiles offer a unique insight into a profound and engaging literary culture with centuries-old written heritage existing alongside ancient oral traditions. ”
At the British Library until 16 February. Full price £10, concessions available.
Lee Miller: A Woman’s War
Lee Miller was one of the first women photographers to be embedded with troops during WWII. She was one of the first to document the horrors of the concentration camps in Nazi Germany, but is more often remembered as a model and a friend of surrealists. (Go figure). Her powerful and moving photographs of WWII’s impact on women are on display at the Imperial War Museum until April 2016. Tickets are £10.
Ai Weiwei at the Royal Academy
It will be overcrowded and overbooked, but if you like AiWeiWei this is the first large-scale survey of his work in the UK. You must book in advance.
Ai Weiwei, Surveillance Camera, 2010
The Celts at the British Museum
3 October – 31 January
First major exhibition covering 2,500 years of Celtic history and the Celtic diaspora. The British Museum excels at this type of exhibition, causing you to look at wide arcs of history across multiple locations through even the smallest of objects.
Romano-British bronze and enamel pan with the names of forts along Hadrian’s Wall. Staffordshire Moorlands, England, c. AD 150. Bronze, enamel. Jointly owned by the British Museum, Tullie House Museum and Stoke Potteries.
The Fabric of India at the Victoria & Albert Museum
3 October – 10 January
In conjunction with the V&A’s India festival, http://www.vam.ac.uk/page/v/v-and-a-india-festival/ the major fall exhibition is The Fabric of India, exploring the rich history of handmade textiles in India from the 3rd to 21st century. The V&A began as a museum of art and design, and this mission is always reflected in its shows.
Sari, 1887, V&A
Goya: The Portraits at The National Gallery 7 October to 10 January
This season’s National Gallery blockbuster centres on Goya’s portraits. Curator Xavier Bray has brought together the first show to focus on Goya’s unerring eye for psychological portraits of royal and common sitters. This will be a sell-out, so book tickets in advance.
Franciso de Goya, The Family of the Infante Don Luis de Borbon, 1783 -84, Fondazione Magnani Rocca, Parma, Italy
Scottish National Gallery, 3 April – 30 January
Rocks & Rivers Masterpieces of Landscape Painting from the Lunde Collection
Norwegians and Swiss are some of the best painters of light around, and if you enjoy looking at beautiful scenery, this exhibition will delight you.
Plus, it is free.
Thomas Fearnley (1802-1842), Arco Naturale, Capri (detail) 1833, oil on canvas.