Like a phoenix rising from the ashes, or like when you wake up and realise you’ve slept through your alarm and you’re already late for work and you haven’t even left the house yet, London’s art galleries are about to burst back into life in a big way.
Over 100 galleries across the city are opening on the 4th of June as part of the first ever London Gallery Weekend, a city-wide art festival that will see the best art spaces in town hosting tours, special events, late openings and performances.
It’s all inspired by Berlin’s own gallery weekend, an annual event that attracts contemporary art lovers from all over the world. Now we’re getting our own version: danke schoen.
It’s a big, sprawling mess of art exhibitions, so to start you off, here’s the London Gallery Weekend website which includes a full list of all the participating galleries as well as curated guides by people like artist Haroon Mirza and museum director Nicholas Cullinan. The Art Newspaper’s LGW site has even more information and guides on it too. And if that’s not enough, here’s our pick of the best things to see at London Gallery Weekend.
Rana Begum at Kate Macgarry
Begum’s softly coloured abstracts are an airbrush dream, a pastel and neon balm for the brain, full of smart geometric shapes and woozy hues on canvas and floating as 3D objects in the middle of the gallery.
Rhys Coren at Seventeen
A Time Out fave, Coren’s art just keeps getting better - and bigger. This is primary coloured semi-abstraction, all about swooping curves and visual rhythms, like disco for your eyes.
Ghislaine Leung at Cabinet
There’s a horse carriage in the gallery, and some coloured foam flooring, and a curtain. Absolutely no idea what it’s all about, but can’t wait to find out.
Vinca Petersen at Edel Assanti
Edel Assanti are one of the organisers of this whole London Gallery Weekend shindig, and this show in their temporary space in Fitzrovia celebrates the ’90s rave photography of Vinca Petersen.
Kate Dunn at TJ Boulting
The artist is leading tours of her new show of drippy, swirly altarpiece paintings throughout the weekend, all soundtracked by pounding gabber music. Check the gallery website for times, and bring paracetamol.
Want to get straight to the good stuff? Here are London's top exhibitions on right now.
Fancy something a little easier on the eye? Try the best photography exhibitions, right here.