Best London Exhibitions Autumn 2019

Tutankhamun is coming to town! Tutankhamon is coming to town! Tutannkamen is coming to town! Take your pick, which ever way you spell him, Tutankhamun being in London is really, really exciting. He is however just one of best London Exhibitions on this Autumn.

If you only see one London Exhibition this autumn …..

Nearly 600,000 people saw Dior: Designer of Dreams at the V&A in Spring, I suspect that even more will head to Saatchi Gallery as the nights draw in.

Tutankamum: Treasures of the Golden Pharaoh at the Saatchi Gallery

I might even have squeaked when I heard that King Tut was coming to London. My mother queued for hours to see him in 1972, our house wash awash with books about him. Now the Boy King is on a final world to celebrate 100 years since his rediscovery. Tickets are expensive, but cheaper than a flight to Cairo. My advice ….. BOOK NOW

  • 2 November 2019 – 3 May 2020
  • Saatchi Gallery, Duke of York’s HQ, King’s Road SW3 4RY
  • Open: Daily 10am – 6pm
  • Off Peak Tickets: Weekdays Adults £27.35, under 12 £19.35
  • Peak Tickets: Weekends and school holidays Adults £31.35, under 12 £22.35
  • You might see the tickets at lower prices but every ticket is subject to a booking fee and I have included this in the price
  • You get a time slot and tickets are not refundable

Must see London Autumn Exhibitions

Much as I love the summer holidays, I do relish the turn of the seasons. New things to see and do, the possibilities of Autumn always excite me.

William Blake at Tate Britain

I had a bit of crush on William Blake when I was a teenager. Once Eric from the Bay City Rollers lost his glimmer William stepped in. My first visit to Tate Britain (or just that Tate as it was then) was a pilgrimage to see their collection of his work. To see the world in a grain of sand is still something that I try to do. Counting the days until I see William again.

  • 11 September 2019 – 2 February 2020
  • Tate Britain, Millbank, SW1P 4RG
  • Open: Daily 10am – 6pm
  • Admission: Adult £18, under 12 and members free

Two Last Nights! Show Business in Georgian Britain at the Foundling Museum

Ever wondered how to put to on a show in Georgian Britain? Then ponder no longer as this show at the Foundling Museum promises to tell you every thing you ever need to know. They should know as the sell Handel concerts that they put on helped to fund the Foundling charity.

  • 20 September 2019 – 5 January 2020
  • Foundling Museum, 40 Brunswick Square, WC1N 1AZ
  • Open: Tuesday – Sunday 10am – 5pm
  • Admission: Adult £12 includes museum entry, children and friends free

Wonderful Things: Tim Walker at the V&A

Tim Walker is a photographer who creates amazing photos. The V&A invites you to join dive into his creative process including inspiration that he finds in the museum and some new snaps that he has taken especially for the show.

  • From 21 September 2019
  • Victoria and Albert Museum, Cromwell Road, SW7 2RL
  • Open: Daily 10am – 5.45pm until 10pm on Friday
  • Admission: Adults £15, children and members free

Antony Gormley at the Royal Academy

You know Antony Gormley, the Angel of the North man. Unsurprisingly the 200 tonne Angel will not be making the journey down the A1. Expect slightly claustrophobic casts of his body. Also promised is a room full of coiled metal in which you can find your own path. Antony Gormley’s work always causes me to pause and think, I’m really looking forward to this.

  • 21 September – 3 December 2019
  • Royal Academy, Burlington House, Piccadilly
  • Open: Daily 10am – 6pm Friday until 10pm
  • Admission: Monday – Tuesday Adult £18, Wednesday – Thursday Adult £20, Friday – Sunday Adult £22. Under 16 and members free

Zandra Rhodes: 50 year of Fabulous at the Fashion and Textile Museum

My mother used to buy Zandra Rhodes fabric and make amazing evening dresses. She still has one hanging in the wardrobe. Even as a child I could see that the beautiful swirling design was a cut above what was usually on offer in our local haberdashery. Most exhibitions that I visit I think, my mother would love this. This one I think we need to visit together.

  • 27 September 2019 – 26 January 2020
  • Fashion and Textile Museum, Bermondsey Street,  SE1 3XF
  • Open: Daily 11am – 6pm, Thursday until 8pm, Sunday until 5pm
  • Admission: Adult £9.90, under 12 free

Frieze London and Frieze Masters

Anybody who is anybody in the art world will be found in a large tent in Regents Park in the first few days of October. It is the place to be to see the latest art trends and you get to wander in the park too.

  • 3 – 6 October 2019
  • Regents Park
  • Admission: there is a vastly complicated pricing structure based on when you go. Take a look at the Frieze website and decide.

Rembrandt’s Light at the Dulwich Picture Gallery

350 years on from Rembrandt’s death the Dulwich Picture Gallery is celebrating is knack of depicting light. Paintings are travelling to South East London out of their native Netherlands for the first time ever for this show. If they can make the journey, so can you!

  • 4 October 2019 – 2 February 2020
  • Dulwich Picture Gallery, Gallery Road, SE21 7AD
  • Open: Tuesday – Sunday 10am – 5pm
  • Admission: Adult £16.50 (includes gallery entrance), children and members free

Into the Night at the Barbican Art Gallery

Into the Night: Cabarets and Clubs in Modern Art to the show its full title promises to explore the art nightlife from the 1880s to the 1960s. I’m hoping for swirl of Toulouse-Lautrec’s Paris and a dive into the decadence of Berlin with Otto Dix.

  • 4 October 2019 – 19 January 2020
  • Barbican Art Gallery, Silk Street EC2Y 8DS
  • Open: Sunday – Tuesday 10am – 6pm Wednesday – Saturday 10am – 8pm
  • Admission: Adults £15 Monday – Friday £17 weekends, under 14 and members free

Gauguin Portraits at the National Gallery

At this stage I confess that I know little of about Gauguin portraits but I do know that I like his wacky colour combinations and depictions of the South Sea Islands. I’m looking forward to learning more.

  • 7 October 2019 – 26 January 2020
  • National Gallery, Trafalgar Square, WC2N 5DN
  • Open: Daily 10am – 6pm Friday until 9pm
  • Admission: Monday – Friday Adult £22, Weekend Adult £24, children and members free

Hogarth: Place and Progress at the Sir John Soane’s Museum

Hogarth and Sir John Soane were close friends and the museum as a great collection of Hogarth paintings. This exhibition will see every one of paintings and etchings in the Place and Progress sequence gathered together for the first time ever. Check out my post about the Sir John Soane’s Museum and all the marvels it contains, if you haven’t been before now is the time to visit.

  • 9 October 2019 – 5 January 2020
  • Sir John Soane’s Museum, 13 Lincoln’s Inn Fields, WC2A 3BP
  • Open: Wednesday – Sunday 10am – 5pm
  • Admission: Free but you do need to book a timed ticket

Lost Dress of Elizabeth I at Hampton Court Palace

Fabric and history two of my favourite things. An ancient altar cloth from a small church in Herefordshire has been identified as being part of dress once worn by Elizabeth I. The fabric has undergone painstaking restoration and is now ready to go on view. It will be next to a portrait of the Queen wearing the dress. Hampton Court is always worth a visit and will be one of my autumn highlights.

  • 12 October 2019 – 23 February 2020
  • Hampton Court Palace, East Molesey KT8 9AU.
  • Open: Daily 10am – 6pm
  • Admission (for the whole palace): Adult £21.30, members free

Pre-Raphaelite Sisters at the National Portrait Gallery

We’ve all heard about the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood, turns out that the women were not there only to be painted. The National Portrait Gallery is to shine a light on the talented female artists of the Pre-Raphaelite movement.

  • 17 October 2019 – 26 January 2020
  • National Portrait Gallery, St Martin’s Place, WC2H 0HE
  • Open: Daily 10am – 6pm, Friday until 9pm
  • Admission: Adult £20, under 12 and members free

Bridget Riley at the Hayward

Friends have seen this show in Edinburgh and raved about it. I cannot wait to see Bridget Riley’s stripes in the Hayward, just the perfect London venue for her work.

  • 23 October 2019 – 26 January 2020
  • Hayward Gallery, Southbank Centre SE1
  • Open: Wednesday – Monday 11am – 7pm, Thursday until 9pm
  • Admission: Adult £16.50, under 12 and members free

Leonardo: Experience a Masterpiece at the National Gallery

Bit of a mystery this one. The National Gallery will recreate Leonardo’s studio and put you into his mind as his paints The Virgin of the Rocks. Similar things that I have been to before like this have been stunning, I’m looking forward to diving back 500 years in time. If you fancy an extra dose of Leonardo try to catch the Queen’s Leonardo collection as it tours the country.

  • 9 November 2012 – 12 January 2020
  • National Gallery, Trafalgar Square, WC2N 5DN
  • Open: Daily 10am – 6pm Friday until 9pm
  • Admission: Monday – Friday Adult £18, Weekend Adult £22, children and members free. Book online for cheaper tickets

Troy: Myth and Reality at the British Museum

Even if you have never read the Iliad the tales of the Trojan War will be familiar. Helen of Troy, the most beautiful woman in the world. The Trojan horse which bought the war to an end. Achilles, Odysseus, Cassandra …. so many famous names. The story is such a good one that books, films and tv series continue to be made about them. At base there is a true story and this exhibition promises to sort out the fact from the fiction. I’m looking forward to mass of Greek Gods and Heroes.

  • 21 November 2019 – 8 March 2020
  • British Museum, Great Russell Street, WC1B 3DG
  • Open: Daily 10am – 5.30, Friday until 8.30pm
  • Admission: Adult weekday £20, weekend £22, under 16 and members free

George IV: Art and Spectacle at the Queen’s Gallery

George IV was quite a showy man. He built the Brighton Pavillion. Not content with amazing houses he filled them with great art. I’m looking forward to seeing a vision of the Regency that is far from Jane Austen.

  • 15 November 2019 – 3 May 2020 
  • Queen’s Gallery, Buckingham Palace, SW1A 1AA
  • Open: Daily 10am – 5.30pm
  • Admission: Adult £13.50, under 5 free. Tickets are valid for a year at any of the exhibitions at the Queen’s Gallery.

So that’s it my list of best London Exhibitions that I really want to to see this autumn. I have no doubt that more enticing shows will come to my attention, keep an eye on my twitter feed or pop back here for updates. Whilst I am out and about stopping for refreshment at some of the excellent London Museum Cafés is always a pleasure. Membership or Friendship of most of the galleries and museums will get you into the exhibitions for free as often as you like, take a look at my guide to London Museum Membership for a full run down. The exception to this rule is Tutankhamun for which clicking on the ticket link is the only way in. Membership of the Art Fund will get you into most of these special exhibitions for half price.

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