YSL’s new look — and 21 other must-see shows
From Yves Saint Laurent in Paris to David Hockney in New York and Radical Women in Los Angeles — must-see shows for the second half of 2017, as recommended by Christie’s experts in London, New York and Hong Kong
Contemporary Asian Art
Sarina Taylor, Junior Specialist, Asian Art, New York
Last chance to see... Breathing Space: Contemporary Art from Hong Kong, Asia Society, Hong Kong
‘I was fortunate enough to see this exhibition while I was in Hong Kong for our May auctions. I loved Cheuk Wing Nam’s installation, Avarita — Silent Greed (2015). You first enter a dark room full of ringing chimes. It makes you feel overwhelmed and slightly anxious, as you might while walking through Hong Kong’s bustling commercial districts. As your senses adapt, the darkness begins to feel calming, and the ringing fades to a melodic humming.’ Until 13 August.
Looking forward to... Art and China after 1989: Theater of the World, Guggenheim Museum, New York
‘This show focuses on art created between 1989 and 2008, the period that laid the foundation for Chinese contemporary art as we know it. The show is already being hailed as the most comprehensive survey of Chinese experimental art in North America. I’m really looking forward to seeing the early, experimental pieces by artists we frequently offer in our sales, such as Cai Guo-Qiang and Huang Yong Ping (above). Seeing their work in a historical context will offer a fresh perspective on the pieces we handle.’ 6 October 2017 to 7 January 2018. -
Ancient Art & Antiquities
Claudio Corsi, Specialist, Antiquities, London
Looking forward to... Imagining the Divine: Art and the Rise of World Religions, Ashmolean Museum, Oxford
‘This ambitious exhibition will explore the origins of the world’s five main religions: how they spread during the first millennium BC and shaped the world as we know it.’ 19 October 2017 to 18 February 2018.
Scythians: Warriors of Ancient Siberia, British Museum, London
‘This is a rare chance to see masterpieces, particularly in gold, from the relatively unknown Scythian civilisation (above): tribes of nomadic warriors who ranged from Siberia to the Black Sea and China. Their culture developed between the East (China) and the West (Greek and Assyrian), and their art reflects the influences of both.’ 14 September 2017 to 14 January 2018. -
Impressionist and Modern Art
Annabel Matterson, Senior Writer and Researcher, Impressionist and Modern Art, London
Last chance to see... Giacometti, Tate Modern, London
‘This brilliant retrospective spans Giacometti’s entire career, from his earlier Surrealist works to the elongated, hieratic figures for which he is best known. The exhibit also brings together all of his famed Femmes de Venise sculptures.’ Until 10 September.
Olga Picasso, Musée Picasso, Paris
‘Across the Channel, the Musée Picasso’s Olga Picasso explores the artist’s tumultuous relationship with his first wife (above). The show offers a fascinating, intimate glimpse into Picasso’s marriage, reflected in paintings and drawings, photos, letters and personal belongings.’ Until 3 September.
Looking forward to... Cézanne Portraits, National Portrait Gallery, London
‘This autumn, London will host an amazing number of Impressionist and Modern exhibitions. This is the first show dedicated entirely to Cézanne’s groundbreaking portraiture, and will include works never before displayed in the capital.’ 26 October 2017 to 11 February 2018.
Dalí/Duchamp, The Royal Academy of Art London, Modigliani, Tate Modern, London; The EY Exhibition: Impressionists in London, Tate Britain
‘Two Modernist giants come head to head at the Royal Academy in October in Dalí/Duchamp. 7 October 2017 to 3 January 2018. Later in November, the hugely anticipated Modigliani retrospective (23 November 2017 to 2 April 2018) — the largest of its kind in London — opens at Tate Modern. The Impressionists will also grace the capital, in an exhibition that examines the experiences of Monet and his comrades in London during the Franco-Prussian war.’ 2 November 2017 to 7 May 2018.
Laura H. Mathis, Specialist, 19th Century European Art, New York
Looking forward to... Her Paris: Women Artists in the Age of Impressionism, Denver Art Museum, USA
‘I’ve always been interested in the ways in which female artists have challenged social restrictions. This exhibition will feature work by a wide range of artists, both famous and little-known, and I hope the show will open up new dialogues.’ 22 October 2017 to 14 January 2018.
Post-War and Contemporary Art
Rachael White, Junior Specialist, Post-War and Contemporary Art, New York
Last chance to see... Carol Rama: Antibodies, New Museum, New York
‘This was one of the most joyfully surprising shows I’ve seen this year. Despite a loyal following in cult circles, Rama — who was self-taught — has been somewhat overlooked, which makes this comprehensive exhibition all the more important. Her fascination with the representation of the body comes through in more than 100 paintings, works on paper and objects. I was as blown away by the presentation of the works — the fantastical frames were chosen specifically by the artist — as I was with the artworks themselves.’ Until 10 September.
Looking forward to... Mary Corse, Lehmann Maupin Gallery, New York
‘Lehmann Maupin is dedicating its autumn kick-off show to the California-based artist Mary Corse, who has been producing works associated with the Light and Space movement since the mid-1960s. She innovated a technique of mixing paint with tiny microspheres to achieve an illuminating effect, which creates an ever-changing sense of movement. I think they are absolutely captivating.’ 7 September to 7 October 2017.
Inaugural exhibition, Musée Yves Saint Laurent, Paris
‘I’m eager to travel to Paris for the opening of this museum dedicated to Yves Saint Laurent. All told, the museum will house a collection of 5,000 garments, in addition to thousands of accessories, sketches and photographs. I have been fascinated with the late designer’s interplay between fine art and haute couture ever since Christie’s landmark Saint Laurent sale in 2009. I love the fact that the museum will be located in the historical YSL atelier at 5, avenue Marceau.’ Opening 3 October.
David Hockney, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York
‘If you missed this blockbuster exhibition at Tate Britain in London, its re-emergence at the Met provides an exciting second chance to catch it. The retrospective offers a comprehensive look at the artist’s six-decade career, and includes both iconic masterpieces and previously unseen paintings. I couldn’t make it to London this spring, so I look forward to spending an afternoon or two on Fifth Avenue, soaking up Hockney’s hyper-stylised paintings.’ 27 November 2017 to 25 February 2018.
Zoë Klemme, Specialist, London
Last chance to see... Wolfgang Tillmans, Fondation Beyeler, Basel, Switzerland
‘This comprehensive exhibition follows Tillmans’ recent major survey at Tate Modern in London. Designed in close cooperation with the artist, the show features more than 200 works from 1989 to 2017. From his candid portraiture and poignant studies of daily life to the abstract beauty of the Freischwimmer series, this diversity confirms why Tillmans is one of the stars of 2017.’ Until 1 October.
Splash! Christie’s Summer Exhibition, Christie’s King Street, London
‘Splash!, our very own summer exhibition, presents an eclectic selection of highlights from our upcoming Post-War and Contemporary Art Day Sale and First Open auctions. From Op Art to Pop Art, the show features works by artists including Tom Wesselmann, Sigmar Polke, Ed Ruscha and Jean-Michel Basquiat.’ Until 28 July.
Looking forward to... Turner Prize 2017, Ferens Art Gallery, Hull, UK
‘The Turner Prize exhibition is always a great opportunity to view work by both emerging and established artists. The panel’s selection often signals the start of a new chapter in the auction market.’ 26 September 2017 to 7 January 2018.
Antiquities and Old Masters
Harry Seymour, Contributing Writer, Christie’s Online Magazine
Last chance to see... Beyond Caravaggio, Scottish National Gallery, Edinburgh, Scotland
‘On the second leg of its UK tour, this show explores the impact of Caravaggio’s uncompromising and often violent Baroque style on followers including Artemisia Gentileschi and Jusepe de Ribera. It is also a fantastic opportunity to see some of Caravaggio’s masterpieces of tenebrism, such as his 1602 work The Taking of Christ, above, on loan from the National Gallery of Ireland.’ Until 24 September.
Looking forward to... Soulful Creatures: Animal Mummies in Ancient Egypt, Brooklyn Museum, New York
‘In ancient Egypt, mummified birds, dogs, cats and snakes were thought to carry messages to deities in the afterlife. This show examines the social role of these votives, as well as the rather unscrupulous side to their trade: recent scans have revealed many to have been empty, mislabelled or false-weighted when sold by priests to worshippers. All in all, it will be a charming look at the ancient art market.’ 29 September 2017 to 21 January 2018.
Alastair Smart, Associate Editor, Christie’s Online Magazine
Last chance to see... Raphael: The Drawings, Ashmolean Museum, Oxford
‘It’s not exactly a revelation to say that Raphael was one of the greatest draughtsmen of all time. Nor that a show of 120 of his drawings is unmissable. This exhibition stands out, though, for the way it charts Raphael’s development over two decades, from callow teen to premature death at the age of just 37. His early works hardly take the breath away, but — under the influence of, and in competition with, Leonardo and Michelangelo — he soon proved himself a bona fide, artistic genius.’ Until 3 September.
Laura H. Mathis, Specialist, Old Masters, New York
Last chance to see... Treasures from the Hispanic Society of America. Visions of the Hispanic World, Museo del Prado, Madrid
‘The Hispanic Society is one of New York’s best-kept secrets, with a wonderful collection of Old Masters and 19th-century paintings including works by Zuloaga, Rusiñol and Sorolla. While the Hispanic Society’s museum undergoes renovation, its collection has been loaned to the Prado, in Madrid. This is a great opportunity to see these exceptional pieces, alongside equally amazing Spanish art from the same period.’ Until 9 October.
Latin American Art
Alastair Smart, Associate Editor, Christie’s Online Magazine
Looking forward to... Radical Women: Latin American Art, 1960-1985, Hammer Museum, Los Angeles
‘If institutions are belatedly acknowledging the contribution of Latin American artists to the 20th-century canon, those figures still tend — Frida Kahlo aside — to be male. As this upcoming exhibition of 116 artists from 15 countries shows, however, art in Latin America was by no means a macho pursuit. A handful of reasonably well-known names such as Ana Mendieta and Lygia Pape will feature alongside plenty of undeservedly lesser-known ones, including Panamanian photographer Sandra Eleta and Colombian sculptor Feliza Bursztyn.’ 15 September to 31 December.