Lynette Yiadom-Boakye, 'A Mind For Motive', 2013. Oil on canvas. 180 x 160 cm. Lynette Yiadom-Boakye: The Love Without
Corvi-Mora, until 13 April 2013
I recently interviewed the former RA Schools student Lynette Yiadom-Boakye who, since her graduation in 2003, has steadily increased her profile as one of Britain’s finest young painters.
Following her Chisenhale Gallery show last spring, she now presents at South London space Corvi Mora a new series of her affecting portraits, whose meaning is made ambiguous by their subjects’ postures and expressions (as well as the works’ titles), whether they are turned away from the viewer in Gift (2012) or face us straight on from a crouching position in A Mind For Motive (2012).
Ben Levene RA, White Azalea. 32 x 29 inches. Oil on canvas. Royal Academicians at Richmond Hill
Richmond Hill Gallery, until 21 April 2013
Richmond Hill Gallery regularly champions the work of the Academy’s finest painters. A seven-week show spotlights a selection of Academicians who continue to work on canvas and board.
Pieces on view include Ben Levene’s still lifes of flowers, posed on intricately patterned cloth; exuberant abstractions by Albert Irvin and Barbara Rae; and a splendid impressionistic view of Venice by Ken Howard. The late Mary Fedden is also represented by a characteristically magical still life of a bowl of fruit and jug of flowers, a butterfly hovering in the red-soaked background.
William Turnbull RA
Chatsworth, 10 March - 30 June 2013
The late British artist William Turnbull RA is celebrated from Sunday with a major exhibition at Chatsworth House in the Peak District. Paintings and drawings are presented inside the historic house, while Chatsworth’s spectacular gardens form an outdoors gallery for a survey of his highly influential sculptures.
William Turnbull, 'Horse ', 1999. Bronze. 1/6 from edition of 6 plus 1 artist's cast. 71 1/2 x 29 x 80 3/4 in / 181.5 x 73.6 x 205.1 cm. Copyright: Chatsworth House Trust.
In the 1950s the Dundee-born Turnbull was a member of the groundbreaking Independent Group and became associated with the ‘Geometry of Fear’ generation of British sculptors. His rough-textured and angular heads seemed to sum up the spirit of post-war existentialism, and an ovoid example from 1957 on view in the grounds, together with more minimalist works in steel from the 1960s and later works inspired by mythology, folk-art figurines and animals.
Courtesy Royal College of Art. RCA Secret
Dyson Building, 14 March – 22 March 2013 Sale day: Saturday 23 March 2013
‘RCA Secret’, the Royal College of Art’s famous fundraising exhibition in which hundreds of postcard-sized artworks are sold without the buyer knowing the identity of the artist, moves from its regular autumn slot to the spring this year.
From 14 March until 22 March, in a new exhibition space at the Dyson Building on Hester Road, Battersea, one can view over 2,500 works and try and guess which is a Grayson Perry or a Tracey Emin. Then on 23 March – for one day only and for a flat fee of £45 per postcard – you can purchase your favourites. Register online here to get an RCA Secret Collector's Number in advance of the sale.
Anne Purkiss , Photograph of Dame Elisabeth Frink RA, Sculptor, 1990. Studio Sittings: Photographing Royal Academicians
Leighton House Museum, 15 March - 12 May 2013
A different perspective on Royal Academicians is offered at Holland Park’s Leighton House Museum, the former home of celebrated Victorian painter Lord Frederic Leighton PRA.
Leighton’s time coincided with the emergence of photography; images of artists posed in their studios became popular and boosted their subjects’ celebrity. Alongside photographs of Leighton and his contemporary Academicians, the museum presents photographs of Members from the last 25 five years, taken by Anne Purkiss and including sculptors Dame Elisabeth Frink and Sir Anthony Caro.
Sam Phillips is a London-based arts journalist and contributor to RA Magazine