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9 virtual exhibition tours to watch online

Published 17 April 2020

Galleries and museums might be closed but you can still see major exhibitions from around the world, while swapping the crowds for a cuppa. We pick some of the best virtual tours and artworks currently available online.

    • 1. Andy Warhol at Tate Modern

      London, curator tour
      In a seven-minute video tour, supplied along with text panels from the exhibition, Tate curators Gregor Muir and Fiontán Moran share their approach to the major Tate Modern exhibition of American pop artist, Andy Warhol. Key works from Warhol’s career tell of his experiences as the son of Eastern European immigrants, member of the LGBTQI community and his brush with death.

      Installation view of Andy Warhol at Tate Modern featuring Andy Warhol's Elvis I and II 1963; 1964.

      Installation view of Andy Warhol at Tate Modern featuring Andy Warhol's Elvis I and II 1963; 1964.

      Installation view of Andy Warhol at Tate Modern featuring Andy Warhol's Elvis I and II 1963; 1964. Collection Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto. Gift from the Women’s Committee Fund, 1966 © 2020 The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc. / Licensed by DACS, London. Photo by Tate Photography: Andrew Dunkley

    • 2. Raffaello, 1520 – 1483 at the Scuderie del Quirinale

      Rome, virtual tour of the largest ever exhibition of Raphael
      Raffaello Sanzio da Urbino, or Raphael, arrived in Rome in 1508, at the invitation of the new Pope Julius II. Although we can’t join him there, the Scuderie del Quirinale has brought its vast exhibition of one of the greatest artists of the High Renaissance online. In this 13-minute walk-through, learn about the social context and the crucial role of patronage in Raphael’s career, while gazing at his lavish range of portraits, religious works and architectural designs.

      Raphael, Madonna and Child with Saint John the Baptist (Alba Madonna)

      Raphael, Madonna and Child with Saint John the Baptist (Alba Madonna), c. 1510.

      Oil on panel transferred to canvas. Washington, DC, National Gallery of Art, Andrew W. Mellon Collection. ©National Gallery of Art, Washington..

    • 3. Picasso and Paper at the RA

      London, virtual tour
      We could hardly leave out our own blockbuster, could we? In our 39-minute video tour of the exhibition, Picasso and Paper, you can experience the Spanish artist’s varied, experimental uses of paper over his 80-year career: drawing on, folding, even burning it. As the exhibition features more than 300 works, touring it meditatively from the comfort of your sofa could be an advantage.

      And, while you’re there – if you like it, you can take a quick spin around our Léon Spilliaert show too, in this 20-minute film.

      Installation view of the ‘Picasso and Paper’ exhibition at the Royal Academy of Arts, London (25 January – 13 April 2020)

      Installation view of the ‘Picasso and Paper’ exhibition at the Royal Academy of Arts, London (25 January – 13 April 2020)

      Photo © David Parry/Royal Academy of Arts © Succession Picasso/DACS 2020 Exhibition organised by the Royal Academy of Arts, London and the Cleveland Museum of Art in partnership with the Musée national Picasso-Paris

    • 4. Tom Wudl: The Flowerbank World at L.A Louver

      Los Angeles, virtual tour
      Here is a suitably meditative approach to the work of American artist Tom Wudl. Doing away with added commentary, the six-minute walk-through gives space to Wudl’s intricately detailed paintings, drawings and prints, inspired by the Buddhist text the Avatamsaka Sutra. Visit the LA Louver website for more information on the exhibition and an interview with the artist.

      Tom Wudl, Wondrous Qualities of Natural Origination

      Tom Wudl, Wondrous Qualities of Natural Origination, 2016.

      22K gold powder, gum arabic, polymer medium, gouache, pencil on Tengucho paper. 34.3 x 31.8 x 3.8 cm. Courtesy of the artist and L.A. Louver.

    • 5. Edward Hopper at Fondation Beyeler

      Basel, curator introduction
      Many online commentators have held up 20th-century American artist Edward Hopper as the poster boy for self-isolation. Curator Ulf Küster provides a tantalising insight into the current exhibition at Fondation Beyeler in Basel, Switzerland, in a four-minute video tour released shortly before its closure. Hopper’s use of framing, windows, and evocation of an unknown landscape beyond the horizon, are all increasingly familiar in a changing world.

      Edward Hopper, Gas

      Edward Hopper, Gas, 1940.

      Oil on canvas. 66.7 x 102.2 cm. Collection of Museum of Modern Art , New York. Mrs. Simon Guggenheim Fund, 1943 Photo © 2016. Digital image, The Museum of Modern Art, New York/Scala, Florence.

    • 6. Jakob Kudsk Steensen: Catharsis from the Serpentine

      London, virtual artwork until 31 May
      Shinrin-yoku, or “forest bathing”, is an ancient Japanese practice to relax and replenish the soul. While long nature excursions are currently off-limits, Serpentine Online is hosting an online equivalent until the end of May: Danish artist Jakob Kudsk Steensen’s digital simulation of a lush North American forest. The moss, the sunlight, the fish-populated pools and the calming music, provided by sound artist Matt McCorkle, all create an immensely tranquil experience.

      Jakob Kudsk Steensen, Catharsis (2019-20)

      Jakob Kudsk Steensen, Catharsis (2019-20)

      Serpentine Galleries © 2020 courtesy of the artist

    • 7. Eye to I: Self Portraits from the National Portrait Gallery, at the Boca Raton Museum of Art

      Boca Raton, virtual tour
      With the term “self-conscious" as its starting point, the exhibition Eye to I is a cherry-picking of self-portraits by major artists in the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery. With a wide range of depictions spanning over a century, this thoughtful presentation straddles themes from cultural identity to body positivity. Catch up with it in this six-minute video tour.

      María Magdalena Campos-Pons, Untitled from the series When I am not Here, Estoy alla

      María Magdalena Campos-Pons, Untitled from the series When I am not Here, Estoy alla, 1996.

      Dye diffusion transfer print. National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution; gift of Julia P. and Horacio Herzberg © María M. Campos-Pons.

    • 8. Tanoa Sasraku: O’ Pierrot from LUX

      London, moving image artworks available until 1 May
      LUX – an agency promoting international artists working with moving image – gifts us two short films by London-based artist Tanoa Sasraku in an online version of her planned exhibition. Set against the backdrop of the English countryside, Sasraku references early cinema and cultural tropes in order to examine the construction of a British identity, from her perspective as a young, mixed-race, LGBTQI woman.

      O' Pierrot, Tanoa Sasraku, 2019. Video still

      O' Pierrot, Tanoa Sasraku, 2019. Video still

      LUX Online Exhibition, Courtesy of the Artist

    • 9. Fiona Tan: Time Without Clocks from Frith Street Gallery

      London, A Moving Image Programme, until 20 April
      As part of its digital offering Frith Street Gallery presents a weekly online programme of moving image works, which are usually seen only in exhibitions. This week Amsterdam-based artist Fiona Tan shares three contemplative works that centre on memory and her sense of time. As Tan explains in her introduction, scale and presentation are usually central to the experience of her works, so we recommend a dark room and headphones.

      Next week, the gallery will be showcasing Raqs Media Collective’s Provisions for Everybody (2018).

      Fiona Tan, Linnaeus' Flower Clock, 1998. Video still

      Fiona Tan, Linnaeus' Flower Clock, 1998. Video still

      Courtesy the artist and Frith Street Gallery, London


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