Spring Guide 2018: London
Spring in London brings more than just sunshine and sunnier dispositions. The British capital is alive with events from world-class and future-forward art exhibitions to open air theatre and iconic flower shows. Enjoy the best that the city has to offer with this guide to the finest spring events in London.
The EY Exhibition: Picasso 1932 – Love, Fame, Tragedy
Focussing on just one year of Pablo Picasso’s career, this new exhibition at the Tate Modern will feature more than 100 works, including paintings, drawings, and sculpture, as well as family photographs. Highlights of the landmark exhibition, which has been organised with the Musée National Picasso-Paris, include The Dream (Le Rêve) and three paintings of Picasso’s lover, Marie-Thérèse Walter, brought together for the first time since 1932.
Tate Modern, Bankside, London, SE1 9TG
John Cale (2018-1964): A Futurespective
For two nights this spring, legendary performing artist John Cale will take to the stage at the Barbican Hall with the London Symphony Orchestra. Known for a career that has spanned everything from classical to pop, avant-garde to pastoral and rock-and-roll, these performances promise to live up to his genre-defying reputation.
Barbican Hall, Barbican Centre, Silk Street, London, EC2Y 8DS
Gregory Porter at the Royal Albert Hall
Critically acclaimed jazz and soul singer Gregory Porter will return to the Royal Albert Hall in 2018. Accompanied by a symphony orchestra, the three performances will offer fans more of the double Grammy Award-winner’s signature sound, hot off the heels of his recent album release, Nat “King” Cole & Me.
Royal Albert Hall, Kensington Gore, Kensington, London, SW7 2AP
The Future Starts Here at the V&A
More than 100 objects will be on display as part of The Future Starts Here, an exhibition encompassing and illustrating the power of design in shaping the future. Arranged around four central themes – home, public, planetary, and afterlife – the exhibition will challenge visitors to question how technological advances are effecting change.
Victoria and Albert Museum, Cromwell Road, London, SW7 2RL
The Credit Suisse Exhibition: Monet & Architecture
An exceptional experience for lovers of impressionist master Claude Monet, the exhibition at the National Gallery considers his relationship with architecture, rather than the more typical explorations of the natural world, such as the famed water lilies or the landscapes around Argenteuil. The exhibition showcases works from across the span of Monet’s career, culminating with the sensational series on Rouen Cathedral.
National Gallery, Trafalgar Square, London, WC2N 5DN
Swan Lake at the Royal Opera House
Part of the highly anticipated summer season at the Royal Opera House, this performance of Swan Lake is a new production of the classic ballet, with additional choreography from the Royal Ballet’s artist-in-residence, Liam Scarlett. Telling the tragic tale of Odette and her prince, Swan Lake will be performed on the main stage this spring, captivating London with its story of doomed love, betrayal, and a terrible curse.
Royal Opera House, Bow Street, London, WC2E 9DD
Regent's Park Open Air Theatre Season
The 2018 season of the Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre gets off to a strong start this May with its Olivier Award-nominated production of Peter Pan by J. M. Barrie. Imbued with a sense of the supernatural and enhanced by its spellbinding use of puppetry, the performance will run until June, when the programme will shift to The Turn of The Screw, a co-production with the English National Opera, and As You Like It, among other productions.
Regent’s Park, Inner Cir, London, NW1 4NU
The RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2018
Some of the best nurseries in the world are lined up to attend the 2018 Chelsea Flower Show, one of the most iconic flower shows in the world. This year’s event will put small, urban gardens in the spotlight, as well as offering attendees the chance to enjoy 10 show gardens, the floral bonanza of the jam-packed Great Pavilion, and extended opening hours on Friday night for Chelsea Late, which will include live music and an artisanal food market.
London Gate, Royal Hospital Road, Royal Hospital Chelsea, London, SW3 4SR
Monochrome: Painting in Black and White
Think of art, and you might think of colour. Not so at the National Gallery’s exhibition, Monochrome: Painting in Black and White. The show takes in the full sweep of art history, from the Middle Ages to the current century, exploring how and to what effect monochrome has been employed. This is one occasion where history really is black and white.
Trafalgar Square, WC2N 5DN
Ferrari: Under the Skin
Marking the 70th anniversary of these iconic cars, the upcoming exhibition at the Design Museum will tell Ferrari’s story through racing memorabilia, drawings and photographs, as well as beautifully-executed models and rare vehicles. Peter Collins’ 1957 250 GT Cabriolet and the 1967 275 GTB4, considered by many to be the most beautiful car in the world, will also be on display.
224-238 Kensington High Street, London, W8 6AG
The Tate Modern is holding a landmark exhibition of the work of 20th century artist Amedeo Modigliani this winter. In addition to his paintings, including 12 of his famous nudes (the most ever assembled in the UK), the exhibition will feature his sculptural work. The use of virtual reality technology, meanwhile, will also allow visitors to experience the bustle of early 20th century Paris, where the artist spent the last years of his tragically short life.
Winnie-the-Pooh: Exploring a Classic
Designed with both children and adults in mind, the Winnie-the-Pooh exhibition at the V&A – the largest of its kind ever held in the UK – promises to be a delightful return to everyone’s favourite bear and the world of the Hundred Acre Wood. Around 230 works will be on display, including E. H. Shepard’s first sketches of the beloved characters (drawn by studying Christopher Robin’s real life toys), and a 1929 audio recording of A. A. Milne himself reading Winnie-the-Pooh.
Victoria and Albert Museum
Cromwell Road, London, SW7 2RL
London Boat Show
Relaunching in 2018 with a dynamic, re-imagined identity, this world famous boat show, featuring the best of boating, yachting, and watersports, is set to make a splash in January. Renowned brands, new boats, and exciting marine technology will be showcased during the event, and the inaugural Beach Club will be available to families wanting to learn paddle boarding, canoeing or sailing.
Royal Victoria Dock, 1 Western Gateway, London, E16 1XL
London Art Fair
An unmissable fixture on the international art calendar, the London Art Fair brings together a stunning collection of museum-quality contemporary and modern art every year. Leading British and global artists will be on display, as well as the curated spaces, Art Projects and Photo50, in the next edition, which marks the 30th anniversary of this iconic art fair.
Business Design Centre
52 Upper Street, London, N1 0QH
Charles I: King & Collector
Following the execution of Charles I in 1649, his astounding art collection was sold and scattered across Europe. Thanks to generous loans from institutions and private collections, the exhibition at the Royal Academy will bring together the incredible artworks of his collection – from miniatures and tapestries (including the Mortlake tapestries of Raphael’s Acts of the Apostles) to paintings by Rubens, van Dyck, and Albrecht Dürer – for the first time in over 300 years.
Royal Academy of Arts
Burlington House, London, W1J 0BD
London Fashion Week
The streets of London will once again welcome the leading lights of the fashion world, from models and stylists to bloggers and influencers, to its biannual fashion week. Spread over five days in February, LFW will feature catwalk shows, Designer Showrooms, and events celebrating and showcasing the upcoming designs of Autumn/Winter 2018.
Various locations around London.