Top London Art Shows this Week: Christopher Le Brun to Azzedine Alaia | BLOUIN ARTINFO
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Top London Art Shows this Week: Christopher Le Brun to Azzedine Alaia

Barbara Kasten. Photogenic Painting, Untitled, 74/13, 1974
(Courtesy: Barbara Kasten and Thomas Dane Gallery, London © Barbara Kasten)

It’s the height of summer in London and there are exhibitions, shows and art events aplenty for the week of July 6-12.Top artists such as Christopher Le Brun, August Sander, Azzedine Alaia, Katharina Grosse and many others are featured. Blouin Artinfo creates a list of these must-visit art shows for its readers.

Recent Openings:

“New Painting” by Christopher Le Brun at Lisson Gallery

July 4 through August 18

“New Painting, a fresh series of large-scale abstract paintings by Christopher Le Brun, marks the British artist’s debut solo with Lisson. “The glowing, scintillating veils of color in the artist's recent oil works on canvas contribute to the constant exchanges of movement, energy, warmth and light occurring throughout his radiant show,” the gallery says. References from music and literature are often found in the titles and works in the exhibition, which includes examples from Le Brun’s drawing and printmaking practices.

“Towards Infinity: 1965-1980” at Simon Lee Gallery

July 4 through September 7

The exhibition brings together a series of major works conceived by artists from the Conceptual art movement during 1965 and 1980.  The15-year period was marked by major social and political upheaval, including significant civil unrest and global conflict, and Conceptual art offered a socio-political critique to this situation with a challenge to the traditional forms of representation. “Taking its title from Giovanni Anselmo’s seminal work of the same name, ‘Verso l’infinito’ (1969), the exhibition explores the dematerialization of the art object and the dismantling of concepts that had bolstered the definition and context of traditional art-making well into the 20th century,” the gallery says. The featured artworks include a wide range of media —photography, film, video, performance and installation —where the artists prioritized idea over form. Adhering to the fundamental premise proposed by Anselmo’s “Verso l’infinito,” the featured works challenge “the constructs of time and space to create an art that is at once forward-looking, in flux and without limits,” the gallery says.

Also on View:

August Sander: Men without Masks” at Hauser & Wirth

Through July 28, 2018

The exhibition is dedicated to the German photographer August Sander (1876-1964). During a career that spanned six decades, he was one of the first photographers to make an effort to document human diversity. Through his photographs Sanders presented a sociological portrait of Germany that included images of its people and the urban and rural landscapes that they were part of, the gallery says. The display features a selection of rare large-scale photographs by Sander made between 1910 and 1931. These paint a sociological picture of the country leading up to and through the Weimar Republic.

“Shape of Light: 100 Years of Photography and Abstract Art” at Tate Modern

Through October 14, 2018

“Shape of Light is the first major exhibition to explore the relationship between [abstraction and photography], spanning the century from the 1910s to the present day,” the Tate says. “It brings to life the innovation and originality of photographers over this period, and shows how they responded and contributed to the development of abstraction.” On display are more than350 works by more than 100 artists, ranging from photos by early experimenters such as Laszlo Moholy-Nagy and Man Ray to exciting new work by Antony Cairns, Maya Rochat and Daisuke Yokota, made especially for the exhibition.

Azzedine Alaia: The Couturier” at the Design Museum

Through October 7, 2018

This show was conceived and co-curated with Azzedine Alaia before his death in November 2017. It was the subject of an extended feature by the critic Sarah Moroz in Blouin Artinfo, which you can read here. Designs in the exhibition span Alaia’s entire career starting from the early 1980s; they include more than60 creations, featuring the zipped dress, the bandage dress and the corset belt among others. The master couturier was famous for the way he created many of his form-fitting fashion designs, by “sculpting” them by hand from the fabric that was draped over a model’s body.

Katharina Grosse’s “Prototypes of Imagination” at the Gagosian

Through July 27, 2018

This is the artist’s first major gallery exhibition in London. Grosse paints vast abstract images that burst with color. “Approaching painting as an experience in immersive subjectivity, she uses a spray gun, distancing the artistic act from the hand, and stylizing gesture as a propulsive mark,” the Gagosian says.

The heart of the show is a single painting of oceanic scale on loose cloth. Grosse made it to fit the space of the gallery. Grosse is known for her in situ paintings in which color is rendered directly onto architecture, interiors, and landscapes. Her new approach creates a bridge between her studio canvases and the in situ paintings, the gallery says.

“The Past is Present — Becoming Egyptian in the 20th Century” at the British Museum

Through July 22, 2018

The show features a range of objects from 20th-century Egypt. Through the display, one discovers how ancient Egypt has provided the means for its modern-day version to create an identity, the museum says. The central focus of the exhibition is the emblem of Banque Misr (Bank of Egypt). It was founded in 1920, right after the Revolution against British occupation in 1919. The newly acquired objects on display for the first time “illustrate the complex ways that ancient heritage was reclaimed and integrated into the everyday life of a society that was both modernising and confronting immense political change,” the museum says.

Click on the slideshow for a sneak peek at the exhibitions.

Founder: Louise Blouin