Twelve London Art Exhibitions Autumn 2023

NPG London © Artlyst

Several exciting art exhibitions will open in London’s major museums and galleries this Autumn. Some like the Marina Abramović exhibition at the Royal Academy and the Philip Guston at Tate Modern will finally open after having been postponed. The National Portrait Gallery sees the return of the David Hockney Drawing From Life show which was prematurely closed due to the Covid pandemic. Other major shows include Sarah Lucas at Tate Britain and Frans Hals at the National Gallery.

Marina Abramovic,Royal academy of Arts
Marina Abramovic,Royal academy of Arts

Marina Abramović

Royal Academy of Arts

23 September 2023 – 1 January 2024

Serbian-born performance artist Marina Abramović is known for her groundbreaking and often provocative work that pushes the boundaries of art and challenges the relationship between the artist and the audience.

An art world icon and a performance art pioneer – Marina Abramović has captivated audiences by pushing the limits of her body and mind, for the past 50 years.

This major exhibition presents key moments from Abramović’s career through sculpture, video, installation and performance.

Different works will be reperformed during the run of the exhibition, so no two visits will be the same.


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Rubens & Women,Dulwich Picture Gallery
Rubens & Women, Dulwich Picture Gallery

Rubens & Women

Dulwich Picture Gallery –

27 September 2023 – 28 January 2024

Rubens & Women, a major exhibition of the Flemish artist Peter Paul Rubens (1577–1640), will unite over 40 paintings and drawings from the artist’s career.

The exhibition will be the first to challenge the popular assumption that Rubens painted only one type of woman, providing instead a more nuanced view of the artist who painted more portraits of his wives and children than almost any other, even Rembrandt.

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Sarah Lucas, Tate Britain
Pauline Bunny 1997 Sarah Lucas born 1962 Presented by the Patrons of New Art (Special Purchase Fund) through the Tate Gallery Foundation 1998 © Sarah Lucas

Sarah Lucas: Happy Gas

Tate Britain

28 Sep 2023 – 14 Jan 2024

British contemporary artist Sarah Lucas is known for her provocative and often humorous works that explore themes of gender, sexuality, identity, and the human body.

Her early works gained attention for their unconventional use of materials and their willingness to challenge societal norms. She frequently employs found objects, such as furniture, clothing, and food, to create sculptures and installations that challenge traditional notions of femininity and masculinity. Her works often contain sexual references and use humour as a way to confront and question social conventions.

This exhibition presents her practice in all its diversity across sculpture, installation and photography, narrated in her voice, and looking well beyond the 1990s Young British Art world.

Breaking boundaries with humour and daring, Lucas shows us the whole spectrum of what it means to be human.


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Frans Hals, National Gallery
The Laughing Cavalier
Frans Hals
1624 © Trustees of the Wallace Collection, London

Frans Hals: The Credit Suisse Exhibition

National Gallery 

 30 September 2023 – 21 January 2024

This exhibition, the first major retrospective of Frans Hals (1582 – 1666) in more than thirty years, means a new generation can discover why he deserves his place as one of the greatest painters in Western art.

Hals was one of the most sought-after painters of his generation. A gifted artist whose deft brushwork was unparalleled, he built his reputation on a new style of portrait – highly unusual in his time – that showed relaxed, lively sitters, often smiling, and even laughing.

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Idris Khan, Annie Morris, Pitzhanger Manor and Gallery
Idris Khan, Annie Morris, Pitzhanger Manor and Gallery

Idris Khan & Annie Morris

Pitzhanger Manor and Gallery

4 October 2023 – 7 January 2024 

British contemporary artists Annie Morris and Idris Khan are set to take over Sir John Soane’s Pitzhanger in West London this Autumn, with an exhibition in the Gallery that spreads into Soane’s Manor. Known for their explorations of emotion, time and memory, the pair’s work explores various media, from sculpture to photography and painting to embroidery. Morris draws inspiration from life experiences, expressed dramatically in her trademark stack sculptures. Khan’s work responds to many cultural sources, with paintings based on sheets of scripts from the Qur’an or musical scores, to create layered, abstract imagery. More details about the exhibition will be available soon.


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Philip Guston, Tate Modern

Philip Guston

Tate Modern

5 Oct 2023 – 25 Feb 2024

Philip Guston is the first major retrospective on the artist in the UK in nearly 20 years.

Philip Guston (1913–1980) the renowned American painter was one of the leading figures in the Abstract Expressionist and, later, Neo-expressionist movements. He is known for his distinctive style that evolved from abstract to figurative, often featuring enigmatic, cartoon-like imagery and a unique blend of humour, social commentary, and introspection.

For over 50 years, Guston restlessly made paintings and drawings that captured the anxious and turbulent world he was witnessing. This exhibition explores how his paintings bridged the personal and the political, the abstract and the figurative, the humorous and the tragic.


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RE/SISTERS,Barbican Art Gallery
Pamela Singh, Chipko Tree Huggers of the Himalayas #4, 1994. © Pamela Singh Courtesy sepiaEYE

RE/SISTERS: A Lens on Gender and Ecology

Barbican Art Gallery

Thu 5 Oct 2023—Sun 14 Jan 2024,

A major group exhibition exploring the relationship between gender and ecology, highlighting the systemic links between the oppression of women and the degradation of the planet.

Featuring around 50 international women and gender non-conforming artists, RE/SISTERS is a new exhibition featuring work from emerging and established artists across the fields of photography and film.

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The Ghana-born artist El Anatsui
The Ghana-born artist El Anatsui

Hyundai Commission: El Anatsui

Tate Modern

10 Oct 2023 – 14 Apr 2024

El Anatsui , one of the most distinctive artists working today, will create an exciting new artwork for Tate Modern’s Turbine Hall.

El Anatsui is best known for his cascading metallic sculptures constructed of thousands of recycled bottle tops and copper wire. Repurposing found materials into dazzling works of abstract art, Anatsui’s work explores themes including the environment, consumption and trade.

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Nicole Eisenman, Whitechapel Art Gallery
Nicole Eisenman, Sloppy Bar Room Kiss, 2011, Oil on canvas, 99.1 × 121.9 cm, Collection of Cathy and Jonathan Miller. Image Courtesy of the artist and Vielmetter Los Angeles, Photo credit: Robert Wedemeyer

Nicole Eisenman: What Happened

Whitechapel Gallery

11 Oct – 14 Jan 2024

The first major UK retrospective of the artist Nicole Eisenman (b.1965, Verdun, France, lives and works in Brooklyn, New York, USA). Nicole Eisenman: What Happened brings together over 100 works from across the artist’s three-decade career – many of which have not previously been shown in the UK. Encompassing large-scale, monumental paintings alongside sculptures, monoprints, animation and drawings, the exhibition showcases the extraordinary range and formal inventiveness that characterises her practice.

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David Hockney, National Portrait Gallery
David Hockney, Self-Portrait 1993

David Hockney: Drawing from Life

National Portrait Gallery

2 November 2023 – 21 January 2024

The NPG’s autumn programme will see the return of the five-star exhibition, ‘David Hockney: Drawing from Life’, which was staged for just 20 days before the Gallery’s closure due to Covid in March 2020.

The exhibition explores the artist’s work over the last six decades through his intimate portraits of five sitters: his mother, Celia Birtwell, Gregory Evans, Maurice Payne and the artist himself. His familiarity with the sitters enables him to work with a range of mediums and styles, from pencil, pen and ink and crayon, to photographic collage and the iPad. The 2023 exhibition will also debut a selection of over thirty new portraits. Painted from life they depict friends and visitors to the artist’s Normandy studio between 2021 and 2022.


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Women in Revolt, Tate Modern
Helen Chadwick, In the Kitchen (Stove), 1977 © The Estate of the Artist. Courtesy Richard Saltoun Gallery, London and Rome

Women In Revolt!

Tate Britain

8 Nov 2023 – 7 Apr 2024

This exhibition will be the first of its kind – a major survey of work by over 100 women artists working in the UK from 1970 to 1990.

Women in Revolt! will focus on a hugely diverse range of artists and a wide variety of mediums including painting, drawing, sculpture, film and performance. This exhibition will explore and reflect on issues and events such as the British Women’s Liberation Movement, the fight for legal changes impacting women, maternal and domestic experiences, Punk, Greenham Common and the peace movement, the visibility of Black and South Asian Women Artists, Section 28 and the AIDs pandemic.


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Impressionists on Paper, Royal Academy of Arts
Edgar Degas
After the Bath, Woman Drying Herself, c. 1890-95 ©National Gallery

Impressionists on Paper: Degas to Toulouse-Lautrec

Royal Academy of Arts

25 November 2023 – 10 March 2024

In the whirl of modernity that was late 19th-century France, Impressionist and Post-Impressionist artists radically transformed the future direction of art. But it wasn’t just through their paintings. In a subtle but seismic shift, they lifted the status of works on paper – drawings, pastels, watercolours, tempera, gouaches – from something preparatory that you left in a studio, to artworks in their own right.

The exhibition features around 70 works on paper by leading Impressionist and Post-Impressionist artists whose innovation would challenge traditional attitudes and ultimately pave the way for later movements like Abstract Expressionism.


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