Matisse in the Studio
Until 12 November 2017
This summer, step into the studio of Henri Matisse. Focusing exclusively on the role of the artist’s treasured objects in his work, this exhibition reveals how this eclectic collection took on new life in his transcendent art.
Jasper Johns: a beginner’s guide
In autumn 2017 we celebrate the work of pioneering American artist Jasper Johns. For those unfamiliar with the artist, here are six facts to help you delve into a fascinating career.
Jasper Johns: 'Something Resembling Truth'
23 September — 10 December 2017
Widely known for his iconic images of flags, targets, numbers, maps and light bulbs, Jasper Johns has occupied a central position in American art since his first solo exhibition in New York in 1958. The first comprehensive survey of the artist’s work to be held in the UK in 40 years, this exhibition will comprise over 150 paintings, sculptures, drawings and prints.
Matisse’s studio: “an interior world of his own making”
With our Matisse in the Studio exhibition now open, Nicholas Watkins reveals the artist’s working practice – orchestrating objects and models in his French ateliers to explore colour, line and space.
Introducing 2018 at the Royal Academy
Next year’s exhibitions will take us from a legendary British collection to the far seas of the South Pacific, and from centuries past to a glimpse into the future of art. Watch the RA’s Artistic Director introduce the programme for our 250th anniversary year.
Building the Pompidou with Renzo Piano
As Renzo Piano celebrates his 80th birthday, fellow architect Richard Rogers looks back at working together on one of the 20th century’s most iconic buildings.
Jean-Michel Basquiat: downtown stray to international star
Ahead of a much-awaited retrospective at the Barbican Centre, here's how the artist cracked the New York art scene and chased his wildest dreams.
Etching: The Infernal Method
Until 19 February 2018
Curated by Norman Ackroyd RA, this selection of works for sale by Royal Academicians and invited artists celebrates the diversity of contemporary etching practice.
Four art biographies to read this autumn
It's beginning to look a lot like autumn... Curl up indoors with one of these new artist and art lover biographies – from Renoir to Peggy Guggenheim.
Jasper Johns: “Take an object. Do something to it. Do something else to it.”
In this long read, art historian Barbara Rose explores the complex transformations of objects and images throughout Jasper Johns's work.
Curator talk: Roberta Bernstein on The Seasons by Jasper Johns
Join us at the RA on Saturday 23 September to learn more about Jasper Johns's series The Seasons – four paintings taking inspiration from Picasso, John Cage, moving home and growing older.
Sonia Boyce: “If we can go to Mars, we can send more kids to art school”
Artist and educator Sonia Boyce is the latest to reflect on art, life and lessons learnt in our ‘As I see it’ series. She talks tuition fees, a love of Liberty and why we should all be prepared to dream of something different...
The artists behind your favourite childhood books
How much do you know about the illustrators who brought your favourite childhood characters to life?
Family how-to: make a colour wheel
Inspired by Matisse's bright paintings and cut-outs, learn to mix paint like a pro with this quick colour-wheel activity.
The Mycological Twist: the artist’s studio 2.0
Come to the RA on 30 September for a roundtable exploring how artists are forging new studio practices in virtual, networked spaces, led by artist duo The Mycological Twist. With usable physical space in cities becoming increasingly scarce, what do the alternatives look like?
10 art exhibitions to see in September
Read our recommendations for exhibitions to see this month – from outsider Art to ancient warriors.
Free student ticket offer
We're celebrating the next generation of artists and architects by inviting them to enjoy our year-round programme of exhibitions, for free!
Without those hours of standing painting, scraping off, moving backwards and forward, picking up one piece, putting down another piece, squeezing out more paint, it doesn’t happen.
Eileen Cooper RA
Henri Matisse in 60 seconds
Got a minute? With our Matisse in the Studio exhibition now open, the RA's Artistic Director Tim Marlow takes a closer look at the artist's life and work.
Shop like Matisse
Find a new object to treasure, with our eclectic Matisse in the Studio range. Choose from hand painted pottery, artistic accessories and kaleidoscopic glassware.
Second Nature: The Art of Charles Tunnicliffe RA
Until 8 October 2017
See the natural world through the eyes of Charles Tunnicliffe RA, one of the best-known wildlife illustrators of the 20th century. To coincide with a newly published catalogue of his prints, we bring together a range of Tunnicliffe’s work, from original illustrations for Ladybird Books to etchings, wood-engravings and watercolours.
El Anatsui Hon RA: ‘Benchmarks’
Until 20 April 2018
See new limited-edition prints by El Anatsui in the Academicians’ Room, in the first of a new series of displays celebrating the work of one Royal Academician.
Make Your Mark on A New Royal Academy of Arts
As the RA approaches its 250th anniversary, we're transforming our building to open up new spaces for exhibitions, learning and debate. Make Your Mark on A New Royal Academy of Arts by naming a statue, adopting a work or simply making a donation.
Dalí / Duchamp
7 October 2017 — 3 January 2018
Take another look at two artistic giants: father of conceptual art Marcel Duchamp, and larger-than-life Surrealist Salvador Dalí. This is the first exhibition to throw light on their surprising relationship and its influence on the work of both artists.
RA Editions: Allen Jones, 'Plein Air'
We’re proud to present a new limited edition woodblock print made by Allen Jones RA in celebration of our Matisse in the Studio exhibition. The green ink of Jones’ characteristically sensual figures pay homage to Matisse as they surround the void, with the print completed by a small still life.
David Hockney: “I’ve never been mainstream. Just be yourself”
To celebrate David Hockney’s 80th birthday, filmmaker Bruno Wollheim has released 80 previously unseen short films made with the artist. Watch three of them here.
How to read it: Henry Tuke’s A Bathing Group
As Tate Britain’s ‘Queer British Art’ marks the 50th anniversary of the partial decriminalisation of male homosexuality, we take a look at the work of Henry Tuke from the RA collection, on display in the show.
Introduction to ‘Second Nature: The Art of Charles Tunnicliffe RA’
Come along to the RA for this free introduction to our exhibition of Charles Tunnicliffe's work, given by Professor Robert Meyrick, Head of the School of Art at Aberystwyth University.
How to read it: Charles Tunnicliffe’s Chinese Geese
Pattern and design are as important as accuracy in this wood engraving by Charles Tunnicliffe RA, currently on display in our exhibition, Second Nature. Come and take a closer look…
The act of drawing is at the heart of everything I do. It is the most intimate of processes and at its best reveals both the hand and mind of the artist to the viewer.
Rebecca Salter RA
Missed this year's Summer Exhibition?
Here's a dash around the show, coordinated by Eileen Cooper RA.
The Interpretation of Movement (a 9:8 in blue)
Terrace Wires: Conrad Shawcross RA
See sculptor and Royal Academician Conrad Shawcross's new public installation – his largest mechanical work to date – in St Pancras International station.
There is only one rule for aspiring artists. That is, only become one if you have absolutely no choice, if your drive is so strong that nothing else could be contemplated. If you think in terms of worldly success, forget it. The rewards are in the doing and in the breadth of art.
Tess Jaray RA
Conrad Shawcross: "I used to work as an extra in films"
In the latest in our 'As I see it' series, sculptor Conrad Shawcross tells us why Brexit might change the meaning of his new St. Pancras installation, what it means to be the youngest Academician – and why artists should never work in pubs.
RA250 stories: building a bridge that’s a sculpture
Behind the scenes
In 2018, our two historic sites at Burlington House and Burlington Gardens will be linked together for the first time. In this video, we look at the complex process of connecting two listed buildings, with a sculptural bridge that traces the line of an original garden path from 350 years ago.
Francis Kéré on his Serpentine Pavilion: “I dream of work in the UK. It’s the place to build”
Three years after his tunnel of straws inspired audiences in the RA's Sensing Spaces show, architect Diébédo Francis Kéré is back in the UK as the designer of this year’s Serpentine Pavilion. We caught up to hear about his new creation.
Make at home
Make a paint-splattering spinning top
Learn how to make a spinning top that will spin and spin, splattering paint to create multiple masterpieces!
Exploring watercolour with Christopher Le Brun PRA
Think you know watercolour? Think again. Join the President of the Royal Academy in his London studio as he debunks some of the myths about this versatile medium and its possibilities.
Learn from experts and artists
Our new programme of short courses and classes offers the opportunity to explore subjects ranging from life drawing to the history of portraiture, led by expert tutors and practising artists.
Missed a talk at the RA?
From artists and experts in conversation to short stories read by leading novelists, catch up on events at the RA with these recordings.
Odd couples: Artists you never knew were friends
With our exhibition exploring the little-known relationship between Dalí and Duchamp later this year, we take a look at the friendship between those two great masters of modern art, and five other artist pairs you may never have guessed.
Charles I: King and Collector
27 January — 15 April 2018
Discover the legendary art collection of Charles I. For the first time since the 17th century, a landmark exhibition at the RA will bring together the astounding treasures that changed the taste of the nation.
Art Sales: Fred Cuming RA
The artist's exploration of dramatic light and shadow around the southern English coastlines continues in a number of new paintings. All works are for sale.
David Hockney RA's SUMO: A Bigger Book
A "definitive visual autobiography" of David Hockney RA, spanning over six decades and 600 pages. Major paintings are accompanied by the artist’s drawings, photo-composites, multi-perspective collages, stage designs, multi-camera video works, and iPad drawings.
The exhibition is the thing that excites me – it’s the moment that the work really comes alive.
Visit the RA shop
Browse our range of artistic products designed and inspired by Royal Academicians, from Grayson Perry and Yinka Shonibare to David Hockney and Zaha Hadid.
Very rarely as an artist do you get that real ecstasy of painting – you are always chasing it.
Chantal Joffe RA
Keep looking at your own work. Keep looking at the world, trying to reconcile the two things. Cherish your fellow travellers. Don’t give up.
How to… make a wood engraving, with Anne Desmet
Anne Desmet RA demonstrates each step in creating a wood engraving, from tracing the original drawing through to printing a first proof.
Mayfair & St James's interactive gallery map
Produced by the Royal Academy of Arts in collaboration with GalleriesNow.net, this interactive map highlights the 145 art locations in this historic quarter of London, including 139 commercial galleries, four auction houses and the RA itself.
The moment just before a work is finished, it’s finished. You want a bit of nervous twitching, a bit of tension, in the sculpture.
Richard Wilson RA
Discover works from the RA's Collections
We've reached the half-way point on our quest to digitise 10,000 items from the Royal Academy of Arts' vast collections. Visit our Tumblr to discover drawings, sketches, prints, books, oddities and wonders, all revealed by RA staff and a team of volunteers.
Architecture is a public art, and is never really finished. When a building is completed it’s the beginning of its life – a life which really only starts when people inhabit and breathe life into it. Buildings change, evolve and grow.
Alan Stanton RA
Explore our Collection
The Royal Academy Collections include paintings, sculptures, drawings, prints, historic books, (i.e. published before 1921), archives, historic photographs and plaster casts.
Become a Friend of the RA
Free RA Tours
Discover the art, architecture and history of the RA in these special, one-hour tours that include the historic John Madejski Fine Rooms.
Inside the Academy
The RA Schools
A school of contemporary fine art, right at the heart of the RA.
Looking for an art-lover’s gift?
Order bespoke art prints, canvases and framed reproductions from our Collection online.
Join the club
The Academicians’ Room in the Keeper’s House began life in 1883, becoming the favourite haunt of the Academy’s artists as a private members club. The room has entered a new phase in its rich history, and has reopened with a fresh new look by the renowned Martin Brudnizki Design Studio. Members can expect artworks by Royal Academicians on display, an exceptional food menu and an exciting programme of events, including an artist-led Salon Series.
Friends of the RA
RA Art Tours Worldwide
These expert-led small-group tours, created by travel specialists Cox & Kings, focus on the art, architecture and archaeology of some of the world’s most fascinating destinations.