Our pick of this week’s art events: 8 – 15 May

RA Recommends

Published 8 May 2015

From Sarah Lucas’s erotic sculptures at the Venice Biennale to Jeff Koons at Norwich Castle Museum & Art Gallery, we guide you through the week’s top art events.

  • Rebecca Salter – Along These Lines

    Beardsmore Gallery, London, 14 May – 6 June 2015

    Rebecca Salter’s delicate, spectral abstractions connect with two rich traditions: the history of Japanese art and craft, of which she has in-depth knowledge, and post-war minimalist painting, exemplified best perhaps by Agnes Martin, the American artist to which she is sometimes compared. To mark her recent election as a Royal Academician, Beardsmore Gallery presents a survey of her works on paper from the 1980s to the present day. For those new to this important British artist, the exhibition represents an affecting introduction.

  • Rebecca Salter , 2009-07

    Rebecca Salter, 2009-07, 2009.

    Mixed media on paper. 74 x 45 cm.

  • Artist Rooms – Jeff Koons

    Norwich Castle Museum & Art Gallery, Norwich, 9 May – 6 September 2015

    The works of Jeff Koons have an elite status, with their price tags sometimes defying belief (a record-breaking $58.4 million was paid for a Balloon Dog sculpture in 2013). But the American artist argues that his elevation of kitsch objects to alluring paintings and sculptures is a democratic gesture, encouraging people to find the extraordinary in the overlooked, everyday things around them. A wide-ranging show in Norwich – an Artist Rooms’ touring exhibition – gives art lovers in East Anglia an opportunity to make up their minds.

  • Jeff Koons , Winter Bears

    Jeff Koons, Winter Bears, 1988.

    Winter Bears 1988 ARTIST ROOMS.

    Polychromed wood. 1245 x 1170 x 450 mm. Tate and National Galleries of Scotland. Acquired jointly through The d'Offay Donation with assistance from the National Heritage Memorial Fund and the Art Fund 2008 © Jeff Koons.

  • Rachael Champion – Architecture of Enjoyment

    Horatio Junior, Norwich, 10 May – 5 June 2015

    French philosopher Henri Lefebvre, in his 1973 text Toward an Architecture of Enjoyment, considers not simply buildings but the possibilities of imaginative, sensory experience in our urban environments. A fascinating-looking group show pairs six artists with designers or architects, in order to make mini ‘environments of enjoyment’. Those taking part include RA Schools alumna Rachael Champion, whose previous installations have arranged together both natural and human-made elements, from mounds of buckwheat grass to digital prints.

  • Rachael Champion , Chair

    Rachael Champion, Chair, 2015.

    Concrete and aggregate with foam. 60 x 45 x 35 cm. UMBERTO BELLARDI RICCI in collaboration with GABRIEL HARTLEY.

  • Collect 2015 – Crafts Council

    Saatchi Gallery, London, 8 – 11 May 2015

    And while it is not the policy of this weekly round-up to cover craft shows, it would a dereliction of my duty not to recommend the Crafts Council’s annual fair, Collect 2015, which presents a highly enjoyable if dizzying array of practices. A highlight promises to be ‘Collect Open’, an exhibition of installations by 14 different artists and historians that points to the future directions in which craft will travel.

  • Fenella Elms , Large Flow Pot

    Fenella Elms, Large Flow Pot, 2014.

    White and cobalt porcelain. Represented at COLLECT by CAA. Photocredit Fenella Elms.

  • Sarah Lucas – Venice Biennale

    Venice Biennale, British Council, Venice, 9 May – 22 November 2015

    While most art critics have been in the beautiful city of Venice for the Biennale, I have been ensconced in RA Magazine HQ, sending the summer issue to press on the same night as the General Election (Friends of the RA should look out for it on their doorsteps from about 21 May). So in a nod to what I’ve been missing, I wanted to give my first thought to sculptor Sarah Lucas, who judging by this video, has produced a wonderfully confident show in the British Pavilion, in what looks like a decidedly SNP shade of yellow.

  • Sarah Lucas , I SCREAM DADDIO

    Sarah Lucas, I SCREAM DADDIO, 2015.

    Installation View, British Pavilion. Photo by Cristiano Corte © British Council.