Local fine art movers and London exhibition enthusiasts cover the unmissable art installations of 2018.
This year, London’s top museums promise an incredible season of exhibitions, led by blockbuster artists such as Frida Kahlo, Claude Monet and Sir Francis Bacon. Based on their years of experience in the world of art, our fine art movers have carefully selected the top five London museum exhibitions to visit in 2018.
Be sure to share your own personal favourites with Momentous on Twitter and let us know in the comments if we missed any of your top choices.
1. Charles I: King and Collector
January 27 – April 15.
Charles I was a noted fine art collector until his execution in 1649, collecting 2,000 pieces of art. Following his death, his beloved collection was sold around Europe by Cromwell. During the Restoration, Charles II unsuccessfully attempted to reassemble the collection by retrieving the sold works. Many of the pieces that were once part of the collection now reside within the permanent collections of European museums, including the Prado and the Louvre.
This year, the Royal Academy of Arts and the Royal Collection have reunited a vast array of the former King’s greatest masterpieces for the first time in 350 years, including works by Rubens, Van Dyck (La Roi a la Chasse) and Titian. This exhibition will include over 100 works of art, spanning an era that is spread across both the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries.
2. All Too Human: Bacon, Freud and a Century of Painting Life
February 28 – August 27.
Tate Britain refers to this exhibition as a “reminder of some of the best painters of human life, from big names like Lucian Freud and Francis Bacon to rarer works from Frank Auerbach and Paula Rego”.
The All Too Human exhibition will interestingly feature Sir Francis Bacon’s large-scale portrait of Lucian Freud — a work that has been in private hands and not exhibited for over 50 years. A particular favourite of our fine art movers, this striking six-foot portrait depicts Freud bare-chested and curled up in the corner of a dark room. Although Bacon and Freud were viewed by many as rivals, they were actually inseparable friends, as shown through the series of portraits each artist made of the other.
The exhibition will also show a portrait of Bacon’s lover, Peter Lacy. This work was completed in 1962, the year of Lacy’s death, and has never been shown publicly in the UK.
3. Michael Jackson: On the wall
June 28 – October 21.
Dedicated to the late singer Michael Jackson, the summer of 2018 will see the National Portrait Gallery host an exhibition exploring the King of Pop’s influence on contemporary artwork.
A vibrant and exciting portal into the ever-evolving art scene, Michael Jackson: On the Wall will feature work inspired by the singer from over 40 artists, sourced from both public and private collections. Including the likes of Andy Warhol and pieces created specifically for this display, the exhibition is a striking portrayal of the impact popular culture can have on modern art movements.
4. Monet & Architecture
April 9 – July 29.
The National Gallery will be showcasing the enchanting architectural paintings of Claude Monet — the first solo exhibition for the artist in London during the last 20 years. The exhibition will span Monet’s entire career and feature his world-famous cityscapes of Paris, London and Venice.
The Monet & Architecture collection will be subdivided into three sections, each presenting a unique take on the artists’ work through the display of a rich diversity of buildings and architectural design. These sections consist of ‘The Village and the Picturesque’, ‘The City and the Modern’ and ‘The Monument and the Mysterious.
5. Frida Kahlo: Making Her Self Up
June 16 – November 4.
Perhaps the most intriguing exhibition of the year is Frida Kahlo: Making Her Self up at the Victoria and Albert Museum.
For 50 years following her death, her possessions were kept secret by her husband Diego Rivera and only unearthed in 2004. The museum will be showcasing Kahlo’s personal collection for the very first time in the UK. This exhibition will also mark the first time it is shown publicly outside of Mexico. It is an opportunity our London-based fine art movers recommend you do not miss.