London’s foremost artistic institution for over 250 years, the Royal Academy of Arts continues to blaze a trail in supporting and showcasing the work of emerging and established artists. Moments from The Chesterfield Mayfair, the academy re-opened in 2018 after extensive refurbishment, and continues to stage some of the most thought-provoking and ground-breaking art shows in the UK. Here, we look ahead to the Royal Academy of Arts’ standout shows in 2019, from the Renaissance masterpieces of Titian and Michelangelo to the raw beauty of Lucian Freud’s self-portraits.
Bill Viola/Michelangelo: Life, Death, Rebirth
Juxtaposing the installations of visionary video artist Bill Viola with the masterpieces of Italian Renaissance art icon Michelangelo may seem unusual but the result is an enthralling exploration of human existence and experience. This original and unique exhibition is a chance to see some of Michelangelo’s most famous drawings in the flesh, alongside work by one of the most acclaimed artists of recent times. The first Royal Academy of Arts exhibition with a main focus on film, the show creates a space for a fascinating exchange between two artists working five centuries apart and in dramatically differing media who are, nonetheless, preoccupied by similar universal themes.
26th January – 31st March 2019
The Renaissance Nude
In spring 2019, this major exhibition at the Royal Academy of Arts examines the origins of one of fine art’s most iconic themes: the nude. Drawing on examples from artistic juggernauts such as Raphael, Titian and Leonardo de Vinci and collating works from Italy, France and Germany among others, The Renaissance Nude looks at the evolution of this artistic tradition and its lasting effect on European expression.
3rd March – 2nd June 2019
Summer Exhibition 2019
The Royal Academy of Arts’ most famous annual exhibition, the Summer Exhibition is also the biggest open-submission art show in the world. It’s a rare opportunity for up-and-coming artists to have their work showcased alongside household names and it features a wonderfully diverse range of pieces, from architecture to printmaking, photography and film.
10th June – 12th August 2019
The largest scale Antony Gormley exhibition for a decade, the Main Galleries are dedicated to the renowned British sculptor during autumn 2019. In addition to existing works, the exhibition will also be used by Gormley as a “test site” for new creations and combines drawings with large installations and sculptures.
21st September – 3rd December 2019
Lucian Freud: The self-portraits
The first exhibition dedicated to Lucian Freud’s self-portraits, the 50 or so works featured were created over seven decades of the artist’s life and are comprised of plate etchings as well as paper sketches and paintings on canvas. Showcased together and in sequence, they provide a fascinating insight into Lucian Freud’s development of style but also one of the 20th century’s most celebrated artist’s personal journey through life and the experience of ageing.
27th October 2019 – 26th January 2020
Located just a few minutes’ walk from Red Carnation Hotels’ The Chesterfield Mayfair, the hotel’s concierge is delighted to arrange tickets for guests wishing to visit the Royal Academy of Arts’ 2019 exhibitions.
Image credits: lead image © Royal Academy of Arts/David Parry. All others images courtesy of the Royal Academy of Arts.