It’s a new decade and art galleries, museums and other venues are looking for fresh ways to approach their collections. From the fashion of dance music through history (including an exhibition inspired by the cabarets of Germany), to the must-see Lucian Freud: The Self Portraits at the RA in London, the shows this year are incredibly varied.

Don’t forget: The London Art Fair also opens from the 19th to the 26th of January so don’t miss it if you’re in the UK!

SATURDAY NIGHT FEVER, John Travolta, 1977 / Everett Collection

Let’s Dance! Fashion in Dance, from Tutus to Sneakers
Until 12th January 2020

Kunstmuseum Den Haag, The Hague, Netherlands

Exploring the relationship between dance and fashion, this exhibition shows how the Charleston, the jive, disco and house not only get us on our feet, but also affect what we wear. Besides professional dance costumes and influential costumes from well-known films, it will also feature designs produced for ballet companies by the likes Viktor & Rolf, Christian Lacroix, Yves Saint Laurent, Vivienne Westwood, Jan Taminiau, Iris van Herpen and Rodarte, as well as work by designers like Dior and David Laport who were inspired by dance.

Spring Woodland, 1925-44 (oil on canvas), Ivon Hitchens (1893-1979) / Manchester Art Gallery, UK

And Breathe…
Until 19th January 2020

Manchester Art Gallery, Manchester

And Breathe… is an exhibition that explores how we can nurture our mental and emotional well being through interacting with art. Evidence shows that taking time to savour experiences, such as looking at art, can increase our mental well being. This exhibition invites you to slow down and connect with art mindfully, moment by moment. Furniture, colour scheme, height of art works, text and a series of audio meditations have all been carefully chosen in order to enhance well being.

The Tiller Girls, 1926 / Spaarnestad Photo / Bridgeman Images

Into the Night, Cabarets and Clubs in Modern Art
Until 19th January 2020

The Barbican, London

Spanning from the 1880s to the 1960s, this exhibition offers a journey into the world’s most iconic cabarets, cafes and clubs in modern art. The exhibition offers insight into the heady atmosphere of Berlin clubs in Weimar Germany; the energy of Harlem’s jazz scene; the vibrant context of the Mbari clubs in 1960s Nigeria; and many more. Every Thursday to Saturday night, the gallery comes to life. The iconic 1920s club L’Aubette hosts live jazz music and classic cocktails are served in Vienna’s jewel-like Cabaret Fledermaus bar.

Untitled, Tom Hammick (b.1963) / Private Collection / Courtesy Flowers Gallery / Bridgeman Images

London Art Fair
January 19th – 26th

London Art Fair provides a space to showcase the most exceptional modern and contemporary art of our time, to discover and to buy. The Fair is an established destination for both museum quality modern and contemporary work, nurturing collecting at all levels, from prints and editions to major works by internationally renowned artists. To enable engagement with art, the fair continues to provide access to talks, tours, screenings and curated spaces. Several of our artists feature in the displays including Copyright Artist Tom Hammick.

Man’s Head (Self Portrait) 1963 (oil on canvas), Lucian Freud (1922-2011) / The Whitworth, The University of Manchester / © The Lucian Freud Archive

Lucian Freud: The Self-portraits
Until 26th January 2020

The Royal Academy, London

Witness Lucian Freud’s self-portraits in one extraordinary exhibition. See more than 50 paintings, prints and drawings in which this modern master of British art turns his unflinching eye firmly on himself. Spanning nearly seven decades, his self-portraits give a fascinating insight into both his psyche and his development as a painter – from his earliest portrait, painted in 1939, to his final one executed 64 years later. They trace the fascinating evolution from the linear graphic works of his early career to the fleshier, painterly style he became synonymous with.

Bridget Riley, 1964 (b/w photo), Jorge Lewinski (1921-2008) / Private Collection / © The Lewinski Archive at Chatsworth

Bridget Riley
Until 26th January 2020
The Hayward Gallery, London

The Hayward Gallery presents a major retrospective exhibition devoted to the work of celebrated British artist Bridget Riley. Developed in close collaboration with the artist herself – and in partnership with National Galleries of Scotland – it is the largest and most comprehensive exhibition of her work to date. Tracing both the origins and the evolving nature of Riley’s innovative practice, the exhibition brings together the artist’s iconic black-and-white paintings of the 1960s, expansive canvases in colour, early figurative works and recent wall paintings.

Fort Vimieux, (oil on canvas), Turner, Joseph Mallord William (1775-1851) / Private Collection / Photo © Christie’s Images

Turner: The Visionary
January 1st- 31st 2020

National Gallery of Ireland, Dublin

Since 1901, the Nation Gallery of Ireland has displayed a selection of watercolours by Turner for one month every year, ensuring that the collection remains in pristine condition. This year, watercolours by J.M.W. Turner will be complemented by works by a broad range of over 20 artists that were inspired by him. All works in this year’s display, by artists such as William Leech, Evie Hone, Paul Cézanne and John Singer Sargent, are from the Gallery’s collection, with many watercolours having not been seen in years.

Portrait of the Infanta Isabella Clara Eugenia, 1573 (oil on canvas), Sofonisba Anguissola (c.1532-1625) / Galleria Sabauda, Turin, Piedmont, Italy / Photo © Musei Reali di Torino / Ernani Orcorte

A Tale of Two Women Painters: Sofonisba Anguissola and Lavinia Fontana
Until 2nd February 2020
Museo Nacional del Prado, Madrid, Spain

This exhibition brings together for the first time key works by two of the most notable women painters of the second half of the 16th century. Featuring a total of 65 works, including 56 paintings, loaned from more than 20 European and American collections, the Museo del Prado presents a span of the careers of these two painters, who achieved fame and renown among their contemporaries but whose artistic personalities became obscured over time.

Femme Aupres de la Fenetre, 1919 (oil on canvasboard), Henri Matisse (1869-1954) / Private Collection / © 2020 Succession H. Matisse/DACS, London / Photo © Christie’s Images

The Window: A Journey of Art and Architecture through Windows
Until February 2nd 2020
The National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo, Japan

This exhibition seeks to reimagine the way you perceive the familiar, every-day window! Organized jointly with the Window Research Institute that describe themselves as advocates of “windowology”, this cross-genre display ranges from Henri Matisse’s paintings and cutting-edge contemporary art to non-art topics such as the global history of windows

History Keeps Me Awake at Night, 1986 (acrylic, spray enamel and printed paper collage on panel), David Wojnarowicz, (1954-92) / Private Collection / Photo © Christie’s Images

David Wojnarowicz, History Keeps Me Awake at Night
Until 9th February
MUDAM Luxembourg, Luxembourg

Wojnarowicz’s work documents and illuminates a desperate period of American history: the AIDS crisis and culture wars of the late 80s and early 90s. Queer, and later diagnosed as HIV-positive, he became an impassioned AIDS activist when an inconceivable number of friends, lovers, and strangers were suffering and dying from the disease and as a consequence of government inaction. Wojnarowicz refused to adopt a signature style and thus this exhibition displays a wide variety of techniques with an attitude of radical possibility.

Korean American artist Nam June Paik / Biennale Arte di Venezia 1993. / MARCELLO MENCARINI

Nam June Paik: The Future Is Now
Until 9th February 2020
Tate Modern, London

This major exhibition is a mesmerising riot of sights and sounds. Paik pioneered the use of TV and video in art and coined the phrase ‘electronic superhighway’ to predict the future of communication in the internet age. As a result, this display brings together over 200 works – from robots made from old TV screens, to his innovative video works and all-encompassing room-sized installations such as the dazzling Sistine Chapel (1993).

Jean Cocteau and Pablo Picasso with the Russian Dancer Olga Kokhlova, Rome, 1917 (b/w photo), Italian Photographer, (20th century) / Private Collection / © Tallandier

Beloved by Picasso
Until 23rd February 2020
Arken Museum of Modern Art, Ishøj, Denmark

This exhibition focuses upon Picasso’s artistic progression in light of his models, centring on Olga Khokhlova, Marie-Thérèse Walter, Dora Maar, Françoise Gilot and Jacqueline Roque. The exhibition retells the stories of these women, casting them as much more than Picasso’s beloved muses. Explore the significance of these women, as the exhibition takes you through their life stories independent of their relationships with Picasso.

Nemesis or The Great Fortune, 1501 (Burin engraving), Albrecht Dürer (1471-1528) / Private Collection / Photo © Luisa Ricciarini

Beautiful Monsters in Early European Prints and Drawings (1450–1700)
Until March 29th 2020

Ottawa Art Gallery, Canada

This exhibition presents a selection of engravings, etchings, woodcuts and drawings from the 15th through the 17th centuries highlighting the different functions of monsters in the visual culture of early modern Europe. Whether they embody moral anxieties of the times or serve a decorative purpose, these fantastic beings elicit both terror and wonder. Through them, we can glimpse the power dynamics of religion and gender, and observe how art is capable of bringing a certain beauty even to the monstrous.

Fiat, 1928 (colour litho), Giuseppe Riccobaldi (1887-1976) / Private Collection / Photo © Christie’s Images

Cars: Accelerating the Modern World
Until 19th April 2020
The Victoria and Albert Museum, London

This exhibition brings together 15 diverse cars to tell extraordinary stories about design and the car’s impact on the broader world. These cars include the first production car in existence; an autonomous flying car; a converted low-rider; and a 1950s concept car. As we stand at a new turning point in mobility design, this exhibition acts as a looking-back-to-look-forward – to understand our past blunders and achievements in order to better imagine how we want to move in the future.

CHICAGO: NEW BAUHAUS Tactile charts and colour charts in a studio at the New Bauhaus in Chicago, Illinois. Photograph, c.1940. / Granger

Bauhaus Chicago: Design in the City
Until April 26th 2020

The Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, USA

In 1933, when the Nazi regime closed down the German Bauhaus, the renowned school’s history of progressive design education seemingly ended, and with it, its innovative synthesis of art, craft, and technology. Yet by the late 1930s, as World War II loomed on the horizon, a number of the school’s notable designers and educators left Europe and found their way to Chicago. This exhibition, features works that range in scale from jewellery, photography, and textiles to furniture, monumental sculpture, and urban planning, the presentation includes pieces created by many instrumental teachers and talented students who shaped the 20th-century history of design and architecture at these schools.

Deity figure (Zemi), Dominican Republic (ironwood & shell), Taino Culture / Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, USA / Photo © Boltin Picture Library

Arte del mar: Artistic Exchange in the Caribbean
Until January 10th 2021

Metropolitan Museum, New York, USA

Arte del mar (“art of/from the sea”) explores the artistic exchange around the rim of the Caribbean Sea before the sixteenth century. Recent archaeological, ethnohistorical, and art-historical research has deepened our understanding of indigenous Caribbean concepts of ritual knowledge, ceremonial performance, and political power. Works of art on view in the exhibition, largely drawn from The Met collection, celebrate the region’s ancestral traditions, and a twentieth-century painting by an Afro-Caribbean artist explores their enduring legacy.

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Trying to catch some of the remaining shows from our December lineup?
Top December Art Exhibitions and Shows