If you think you've exhausted the London art scene, it may be time to escape town for one of these exhibitions, which are just a train journey away from the capital. Pack a picnic, head to the coast or into the countryside and we guarantee you'll be pleasantly surprised at what you find.
RECOMMENDED: our full guide to day trips from London
‘A Beautiful Disorder’ displays the work of 16 contemporary Chinese artists whose sculptures reflect on the fractious state of culture, politics and society in China. Works include Wang Yuyang's colossal, six-metre-tall monument, 'Identity', an abstract column created with 3D printing and cutting-edge modelling technology, which would probably look really good in the lobby of a bank, ironically.
Cass Sculpture Foundation, New Barn Hill, Goodwood, West Sussex, PO18 0QP
On until November 6 2016
Martin Creed's work often provokes a mixture of outrage and amusement. His latest exhibition at Hauser & Wirth in Somerset does not disappoint. The British artist, who is known for pieces such as ‘Work No. 200 – Half the air in a given space’, in which he filled a half of a room’s volume with balloons, has spread his work over five gallery spaces. Expect to see a mixture of paintings, films, drawings, sculptures, music, spoken-word pieces and performances – most of which has been created in situ.
Durslade Farm, Dropping Lane, Bruton, Somerset, BA10 0NL
On until September 11 2016
Who said the past was dull? ‘Colour: The Art and Science of Illuminated Manuscripts’ at the Fitzwilliam Museum proves that the Middle Ages were anything but drab. The museum marks its 200th anniversary with a show featuring more than 150 colourful manuscripts, including prayer books of European royalty and centuries-old religious papers.
The Fitzwilliam Museum, Trumpington Street, Cambridge, CB2 1RB
On until December 30 2016
To mark the centenary of World War One, the gallery has commissioned two works by contemporary artist Yinka Shonibare MBE, who explores themes of cultural identity and colonialism, and is known for his multi-coloured – often headless figures. Look closer at the walls of the gallery and you will notice the names of immigrants who have enriched British culture, from T.S. Eliot to Zaha Hadid.
Turner Contemporary Rendezvous, Margate, Kent, CT9 1HG
On until October 30 2016
‘Alberto Giacometti: A Line Through Time’ commemorates the 50th anniversary of the artist’s death. There are more than 100 works on display, including the spindly, striding, forlorn figures that he is known for. While you are there, check out Henri Cartier-Bresson’s black-and-white photographs of Paris captured between 1929 and 1985 – they are bound to get you all misty-eyed for the City of Love.
Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts University of East Anglia, Norwich, NR4 7TJ
On until August 29 2016
If you enjoyed ‘Strange and Familiar: Britain as Revealed by International Photographers’ at the Barbican Art Gallery, which was curated by Martin Parr, then you will love this exhibition of his own work at Firstsite. The British documentary and photojournalist has amassed more than 300 photographs spanning the last 40 years, documenting the shift from monochrome to colour photography and offering a fascinating glimpse into the lives of rural British communities.
Lewis Gardens, High Street, Colchester, Essex, CO1 1JH
On until October 2 2016
Or stay put with these amazing art shows
You may also like
Snap up exclusive discounts in London
Time Out's handpicked deals — hurry, they won't be around for long...