Our pick of this week’s art events: 20 – 26 November

RA Recommends

Published 20 November 2015

From the artists of the Japanese Mono-ha movement in London, to an imaginary museum in Liverpool, we bring you the must-see shows opening this week.

  • Susan Philipsz: War Damaged Musical Instruments

    Tate Britain, London, 21 November – 3 April 2016 (closed temporarily between 21 November–3 April 2016)
    For the WWI Centenary commemorations Susan Philipsz has created a poignant sound installation. Using recordings of British and German instruments damaged by war, the Turner Prize-winning artist has produced a fragmented, distorted version of The Last Post – a tune that signals the end of a battle. Several years in the making, each element of War Damaged Musical Instruments has been carefully thought through: woodwind and brass instruments have been selected because human breath flows through them; sound runs in narrow channels up and down the gallery space to echo the signals used to direct soldiers on the battlefield. Part of the Tate Britain site was originally a First World War military hospital, making Philipsz’ piece all the more resonant.

  • Alto Saxaphone (ruin)

    Alto Saxaphone (ruin)

    Brass silvered. Only the bell with two valves preserved. Salvaged from the Alte Münz bunker, Berlin, 1945

    Collection Musikinstrumenten-Museum Berlin

  • Shigeo Anzaï: Index I

    White Rainbow, London, 25 November – 23 January 2016
    Closely involved with the artistic avant-garde in Japan during the 1970s, Shigeo Anzaï captured the landmark exhibitions and events of the era on camera, and was the leading photographer of the Mono-ha movement (which explored the interdependency of natural and industrial materials). While working for the 10th Tokyo Biennale in 1970, Anzaï assisted Carl Andre, Daniel Buren and Richard Serra - documenting their groundbreaking performances, happenings and installations. This is Anzaï’s first solo exhibition in the UK, featuring rare photographs of Buren and Serra, plus important Mono-ha artists such as Jiro Takamatsu and Kishio Suga at work. Index I will be followed by a second show at White Rainbow focusing on Anzaï’s portraits of famous artists in summer 2016.

  • Richard Serra, The 10th Tokyo Biennale '70 - Between Man and Matter, Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum

    Richard Serra, The 10th Tokyo Biennale '70 - Between Man and Matter, Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum, May, 1970.

    22.8 x 30.4 cm. Courtesy the artist, Zeit-Foto, Tokyo and White Rainbow, London © Shigeo Anzaï.

  • Film London Jarman Award 2015 Weekend

    Whitechapel Gallery, London, 21 – 22 November 2015
    Inspired by the legacy of innovative artist-filmmaker Derek Jarman, The Jarman Award recognises artists working with the moving image, celebrating experimentation and originality. This year, Adam Chodzko, Seamus Harahan, Gail Pickering, Alia Syed, Bedwyr Williams and Andrea Luka Zimmerman have been shortlisted, and you can catch screenings of their work – plus special talks and performances at the Whitechapel Gallery this weekend – in the final part of a UK-wide tour. Expect Syed, Harahan and Zimmerman to explore documentary, personal work, social space and locality, and Chodzko, Pickering and Williams to discuss history, narrative and storytelling.

  • Bedwyr Williams, ECHT

    Bedwyr Williams, ECHT, 2014.

    Digital video. Courtesy the artist and Limoncello Gallery.

  • Samuel Pepys: Plague, Fire, Revolution

    Royal Museums Greenwich, London, 20 November – 28 March 2016
    Samuel Pepys is one the most famous diarists in history, and no wonder: he witnessed first-hand many of the major events of 17th-century Britain. He was there at the execution of King Charles I and was on the ship that brought Charles II out of exile; he was in London during the Great Fire, the plague, the death of Oliver Cromwell and the overthrow of James II; he saw the greatest theatre, heard the greatest music, and read the most pioneering scientific writing of the age. What’s more, he wrote in a strikingly candid, touchingly human way about all of the above – showing how everyday life carried on regardless. This exhibition shows how tightly Pepys’ personal life was entwined with the public events of his era.

  • Unknown, Painting of 'The Fire of London, September 1666'

    Unknown, Painting of 'The Fire of London, September 1666', 17th century.

    Oil on wood panel. 59.2 x 86.7 cm. National Maritime Museum, London.

  • An Imagined Museum: works from Pompidou, Tate and MMK Collections

    Tate Liverpool, 20 November – 14 February 2016
    In Fahrenheit 451, Ray Bradbury’s 1953 sci-fi novel, works of literature are banned – meaning the only way to save them is to learn them by heart. This unusual, participatory exhibition takes this idea and invites us to imagine a scenario where the artworks on view are about to be banished. How best to preserve visual art in memory? Visitors are encouraged to recollect and represent their favourite works in a performance space, and when the exhibition closes they will be asked to replace those works in the empty gallery. Over 60 artworks from the Centre Pompidou, Tate and MMK Collections, by artists including Marcel Duchamp, On Kawara, Bridget Riley, Andy Warhol and Rachel Whiteread make up the “imaginary museum”.

  • Sturtevant, 1924-2014, Warhol Flowers

    Sturtevant, 1924-2014, Warhol Flowers, 1990.

    Silkscreen and acrylic on canvas. 295 x 295 cm. MMK Museum für Moderne Kunst Frankfurt am Main, Photo: Axel Schneider © Sturtevant Estate Paris.

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