Everything you’ll see at the Summer Exhibition ☀️😎 represents the art being made today. Expect to find a panorama of art in all media, from painting, printmaking, film and photography to sculpture, architectural works and performance art.
Almost 250 years ago, the RA’s founding members agreed to hold an “Annual Exhibition of Paintings, Sculptures and Designs … open to all Artists”, to help finance the training of young artists in the Royal Academy Schools. Now, nearly 250 years later, ahead of our big anniversary in 2018, Royal Academician Eileen Cooper, explores themes of discovery and new talent from her unique position as Keeper of the Royal Academy – the Academician who is responsible for supporting and guiding the students.
Cooper takes on the mantle of coordinating the largest open submission exhibition in the world, hanging over 1,200 works by artists established and lesser-known in the space of just eight days. Don’t miss work by internationally renowned artists Rosemarie Trockel, Julian Schnabel, Hassan Hajjaj, Secundino Hernández, Isaac Julien, Tomoaki Suzuki, Mark Wallinger and Sean Scully RA, as well as submissions by new Royal Academicians including Gilbert & George and David Adjaye. Other highlights include Yinka Shonibare RA’s six metre high colourful wind sculpture in the RA Courtyard, and Farshid Moussavi RA’s unique focus on construction coordination drawings in the Architecture Gallery.
The genre-defining exhibition of art, design, film and literature.
From the 19th century cabinet of curiosities, to the vastness of space. Through future cities, into the inner landscapes of human perception.
Uncover the mysterious lands of Jules Verne and Ray Harryhausen where Science Fiction narratives first took root. Venture on an odyssey into our solar system, with vintage artwork promoting Soviet visions of space alongside immersive work by Soda_Jerk. Visit a gallery of aliens, and stand alongside iconic spacesuits from a galaxy of blockbusters including Star Trek and Interstellar.
Imagine dystopian worlds with Margaret Atwood and 28 Days Later. Then, with nowhere left to explore but human consciousness, delve deep and experience the transformation and mutation of the body through the eyes of Jack Kirby and Ex Machina.
Curated by historian and writer Patrick Gyger, this festival-style exhibition consists of more than 800 works, many of which have never been seen in the UK before. Continuing across the Centre, it includes artwork from Isaac Julien, Larissa Sansour and Conrad Shawcross, and an installation from the creators of Black Mirror.
STREATLIFE is the new name for Alexandra Palace’s legendary Street Food & Craft Beer festival. The festival takes place over four summer weekends. Featuring over 30 of London’s top street food vendors, craft beer bars, cocktails, Pimms and all sorts of tasty treats.
Saturdays feature eclectic bands and on Sundays the DJs take over. There’ll also be live street art and graffiti for you to sit back and watch.
It’s 2001. Garage is the anthem of the UK. Nadia feels like it’s her time to shine.
A hot summer’s night of love promises endless possibilities. Swept up in drinking, dancing, hope, ambition, lust, greed… Nadia will make decisions that will determine the rest of her life.
Rhythmically underscored by your favourite UK Garage bangers. This is theatre you can rave to.
Sabrina Mahfouz brings all those garage music memories flooding back in her hit theatre show With A Little Bit of Luck. Following a sell-out run at The Last Word 2016, the show returns to the festival, this time turning our Main Space into a full-on garage rave with the help of sets from UK Garage legends DJ Luck and MC Neat, Mighty Moe of The Heartless Crew and DJ Steady.
Block Universe, London’s international performance art festival, is back for the third year running, from 29 May to 4 June 2017, with a programme of newly commissioned performances, UK premieres, talks and workshops.
Week long festival presenting work by some of the most exciting UK-based and international artists working in performance art today:
Liz Magic Laser
Young In Hong
Collaboration between Kim Coleman, Zoë Poluch and Cara Tolmie
In post-Brexit Britain, this year’s festival theme will explore ideas surrounding political bodies, both personal and public, addressing identity politics and notions of nationhood set against a changing socio-political landscape. Looking at networked communities and the power of collective voices, Block Universe will champion work that questions the status quo in divisive times.
With four UK premieres and five site-specific commissions in noteworthy settings across central London, the works include: choreography modelled on the Gwangju uprising taking place in the public square of the Royal Academy of Arts courtyard by Young In Hong; Stina Nyberg’s choreographic work questioning Swedish physical ideals from the 1920s through a visually described performance; Rory Pilgrim’s collaboration with a youth group exploring sci-fi robotic support systems of care set in a Quaker Hall; and Isil Egrikavuk’s performative dinner exploring parallels between Pluto’s demotion from our solar system with the UK’s exit from the EU, amongst others.
Circus, street and theatre mix where glamour and sleaze rub shoulders in this diverse trip around the streets of Soho.
SOHO – just one word conjures up London’s world famous district full of sounds, vibes and its unique buzz: a place filled with gloriously diverse characters. SOHO – It’s not just a place, it’s a state of mind….
The show has a seriously crazy and multi talented international cast tell the fast-paced story of a young man’s walk on the wild side, as the colourful characters he meets reveal an unexpected and darkly fantastical world, where glamour and sleaze rub shoulders.
Featuring soaring aerial acrobatics on moving trapezes take the energetic world class performers on a rollercoaster ride. With the pulsating sound of the underground, and the music scene that is Soho’s heartbeat = 21st century indie, buskers, the burlesque of the 50s, the 60s love and peace Carnaby Street generation, disco and punk of the 70s, Cool Britannia pop of the 80s and rave of the 90s – SOHO has THE iconic soundtrack that is….Soho
The most complete range of archaeological objects unearthed by Crossrail, Europe’s largest infrastructure project, is on display alongside the story of this great feat of engineering in a major exhibition.
The construction of London’s newest railway, which will be known as the Elizabeth line when services begin in 2018, has given archaeologists a unique chance to explore some of the city’s most historically important sites. Since work began in 2009, the project has undertaken one of the most extensive archaeological programmes ever in the UK, with over 10,000 artefacts shining a light on almost every important period of the Capital’s history. Read more about the archaeology behind the exhibition from the curator, Jackie Keily.
The wide variety of items on display explores 8,000 years of human history, revealing the stories of Londoners ranging from Mesolithic tool makers and inhabitants of Roman Londinium to those affected by the Great Plague of 1665.
These finds were discovered in locations as diverse as suburban Abbey Wood in the south east, through Canary Wharf, across to Liverpool Street, Tottenham Court Road and ending in Westbourne Park and Acton. The finds sit against a backdrop telling the engineering story of the largest infrastructure project currently underway in Europe, with key facts and figures presented throughout.
Saatchi Gallery and Huawei have teamed up to present From Selfie to Self-Expression. This will be the world’s first exhibition exploring the history of the selfie from the old masters to the present day, and will celebrate the truly creative potential of a form of expression often derided for its inanity.
The show will also highlight the emerging role of the mobile phone as an artistic medium for self-expression by commissioning ten exciting young British photographers to create new works using Huawei’s newest breakthrough dual lens smartphones co-engineered with Leica.
The three-day event returns, coinciding with the city-wide games initiative, London Games Festival. Filled with a host of hands-on opportunities for visitors to get involved.
Showcasing the wider possibilities of games, the peculiar, the beautiful, the deeply experimental. It’s a place for games that get us playing in new and wonderful ways – whether that’s in groups, on our own, outside, inside, on or underneath tables. Games that send us running across courtyards, games situated on nearby screens, games that take place entirely in our heads.
There will be over 40 game varieties available across the weekend, with highlights including:
A nine hole mini-golf course on Somerset House’s River Terrace, played through a landscape of environmental destruction
The Awkward Arcade, a real life experimental video arcade by James Medd, showcasing games that are designed to make participants think and move in ways uncommon to mainstream games culture
The Art of Ping Pong – an interactive ping pong table that generates a unique digital artwork with each game that is played
A recreation of street artist Aïda Gómez’s Joy Is Here, a massive communal word search covering the walls of an entire room
A new interactive game from London-based theatre group, Block Stop – Of Plagues, Deceptions and Other Things – where players have to explore Somerset House and solve puzzles to stop an outbreak of the bubonic plague