Our pick of this week’s art events: 8 – 14 January

RA Recommends

Published 15 January 2016

From paintings on the coast in Bournemouth and Margate to arresting multi-media installations in London, we bring you the must-see shows opening this week.

  • Rose Wylie

    Turner Contemporary, Margate, 12 January – 31 March
    Turner Contemporary begins its 2016 programme with an exhibition of work by painter Rose Wylie RA, who will be the first painter to exhibit in the institution’s stunning Sunley Gallery. Wylie’s deliberately naïve images draw on a wide and rich range of influences. She is inspired by moments with a “special quality” – this could be a film, an Eygptian Hajj painting or even a newspaper clipping. A Wylie painting is like a well-worn school uniform – endearingly ill fitting, slightly awkward and patched or darned in some places.

  • Patrick Procktor: The Last Romantic

    TheGallery, Arts University Bournemouth, 14 January – 25 February
    Patrick Procktor RA first showed at The Redfern – London’s oldest commercial art gallery – in May 1963. The exhibition was Procktor’s introduction to the great and good of 60s London. He became part of a glittering circle bejewelled with David Hockney RA, Celia Birtwell, Ossie Clark and Princess Margaret. Working primarily in watercolour and oils, Procktor mediated the visual language of the age through his own romantic sensibility. The result was a lively yet considered approach to landscape and portraiture.

  • Patrick Proktor, Jimi Hendrix II

    Patrick Proktor, Jimi Hendrix II, 1973.

    The Redfern Gallery.

  • I am Van Dyck

    Dulwich Picture Gallery, London, 12 January – 24 April
    At the Dulwich Picture Gallery, the final self-portrait by Anthony van Dyck casts a contemplative eye down the enfilade and surveys the exhibition I am Van Dyck; a show of work by the artist and Turner Prize-winning British sculptor Mark Wallinger. On loan from the National Portrait Gallery, this image introduces the organising themes of individuality and the self. Wallinger’s contributions – the monolithic sculpture Self (Times New Roman) and I Am Innocent, a reproduction of Pope Innocent X by Velázquez that hangs and rotates in isolation within the gallery space – are a stark contrast to Van Dyck’s contemplative gaze. The conversation of identity is furthered through this exciting juxtaposition.

  • Sculpture 4tet

    Marian Goodman Gallery, London, 12 January – 20 February
    Sculpture 4tet is a critical exhibition that aims to complicate our understanding of “sculpture”. Familiar and well established, we tend to take the term for granted, not questioning what it means. Curator Jean-Pierre Criqui suggests that the sculptor is the “enemy of amnesia”. He uses the work of very different artists – Luciano Fabro, Jean-Luc Moulène, Bruce Nauman and Danh Vo – to support this idea. Four three-dimensional works, in steel, wood, glass, onyx and even flour, occupy the gallery space. They are unified by the shared motif of the body, albeit in varying degrees of abstraction. Drawings, photographs, films and electric lights on the walls finish this intriguing new display.

  • Grayson Perry: The Vanity of Small Differences

    Victoria Art Gallery, Bath, 9 January – 10 April
    The Vanity of Small Differences, a series of tapestries by Grayson Perry RA, takes the template of William Hogarth’s A Rake’s Progress and transposes the imagery through time and across mediums. This piece performs a visual commentary on Britain’s enduring fascination with class and taste. These issues, particularly that of class, are always current and always contentious. Visit this exhibition to marvel at how Perry has managed to weave acerbic social observations into his gaudy creations.

  • Grayson Perry, The Adoration of the Cage Fighters

    Grayson Perry, The Adoration of the Cage Fighters, 2012.

    Edition of 6 plus 2 APs.

    Wool, cotton, acrylic, polyester and silk tapestry. 200 x 400 cm. Arts Council Collection, Southbank Centre London and British Council. Gift of the artist and Victoria Miro Gallery with the support of Channel 4 Television, The Art Fund and Sfumato Foundation with additional support from AlixPartners. © Grayson Perry. Photography © Stephen White.