1. V&A Museum
Always worth a visit anyway, but there are two highly recommended exhibitions taking place this summer:
The Pink Floyd Exhibition: Their Mortal Remains
13th May – 1st October
The first retrospective of one of the world’s most pioneering and influential bands, the exhibition offers a spectacular audio-visual journey, chronicling the music, design and staging of the band from their debut in the 1960′s through to the present day. It has been produced with active involvement and collaboration from the three surviving band members, and includes artefacts such as instruments, music technology, original designs, architectural drawings, hand-written lyrics and artwork.
Balenciaga: Shaping Fashion
27th May – 18th February 2018
Also showing at the V& A, this exhibition examines the work and legacy of influential Spanish couturier Cristóbal Balenciaga, one of the most revered and influential fashion designers of the 20th century. His unique and forward-thinking vision of female beauty, innovative use of textiles and ingenious pattern-cutting, shaped the modernity of 1960s fashion and continues to shape fashion today. The exhibition will take an in depth look at the craftsmanship behind Balenciaga’s designs and will explore his impact through designers who worked with him and those who show his influence today. The exhibition also marks the 100th anniversary of his first fashion house in San Sebastian.
2. Courtauld Institute: Bloomsbury Art and Design
Until 24th September
This exhibition features a large selection of works held by the Courtauld Institute, many of which were bequeathed by the artist and art critic Roger Fry (1866 – 1934) in 1935. Through exhibitions in 1910 and 1912, Fry introduced the British public to modern European painting, including works by Cézanne, Matisse, Picasso. Fry also helped bind together a group of like-minded British artists, including Duncan Grant (1885 – 1978) and Vanessa Bell (1879-1971). They were inspired not only by these continental artistic developments, but by their appreciation for art from further afield, including Africa and China. They became known as the Bloomsbury Group, after the central London district where they initially lived and worked.
3. The Serpentine Gallery, Hyde Park: Grayson Perry: The Most Popular Art Exhibition Ever!
8th June – 10th September
This summer Grayson Perry, one of the most astute commentators on contemporary society and culture, will present a major exhibition of new work. The works will touch on many themes including popularity and art, and the current cultural landscape.
Perry said: The new works I am making all have ideas about popularity hovering around them. What kind of art do people like? What subjects? Why do people like going to art galleries these days? What is the relationship of traditional art to social media?”
4. Regents Park Open Air Theatre
19th May – 16th September
Always a treat, in such beautiful and atmospheric surroundings. Set within landscaped grounds, the theatre boasts its own picnic lawn, barbecue and the West End’s longest bar, stocked with all your favourite summer drinks – including plenty of Pimm’s!
Treats this year include A Tale of Two Cities, Oliver Twist and Jesus Christ Superstar.
5. The Royal Academy of Arts: Matisse in the Studio
5th August – 12th November
Matisse drew his collection from the far corners of the world: Buddhist statuary from Thailand, Bamana figures from Mali, textiles from Polynesia. This sumptuous exhibition offers a rare glimpse into the artist’s personal collection, as well as the paintings, sculptures and drawings it inspired. Seen together, they reveal how Matisse’s masterful vision of richness, balance and vital, fluid energy first stemmed from the collage of patterns and rhythms which he found in the world of objects.
6. Natural History Museum: Wildlife Photographer of the Year
Until 10th September
The Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition, developed and produced by the Natural History Museum, London, is an international showcase of the very best in nature photography, and regarded as being the ‘Oscars’ of the wildlife photographic calendar. With spectacular shots of landscapes, and images which capture all aspects of the natural world, this exhibition is well worth a visit.
7. Somerset House: Summer Series
This year’s Summer Series at Somerset House presents a world-class line-up in the stunning surroundings of one of London’s most iconic landmarks. Performers include Nora Jones, Damian Marley, Cinematic Orchestra and Goldfrapp.
8. South Bank: Tate Modern
Don’t miss a trip to the South Bank, where there is just so much to choose from – home to the National Theatre, the BFI, the Royal Festival Hall and the Hayward Gallery and the Tate Modern.
The latter is hosting the UK’s first major retrospective of Alberto Giacometti for 20 years, from 10th May – 10th September. Celebrated as a sculptor, painter and draughtsman, Giacometti’s distinctive elongated figures are some of the most instantly recognisable works of modern art. Through unparalleled access to the extraordinary collection and archive of the Fondation Alberto et Annette Giacometti, Paris, the exhibition brings together over 250 works. It includes rarely seen plasters and drawings which have never been exhibited before.
9. On the South Bank this summer, there is also a Nordic Festival, Nordic Matters, a year-long exploration of arts and culture from Aland Islands, Denmark, Faroe Islands, Finland, Greenland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden. Encompassing music, dance, theatre, literature, spoken word, visual art, design, fashion and food from the Nordic countries, this includes a floating textile installation that artist Outi Pieski describes as a ‘drawing in air’ and, for children, Adventures in Moominland, an exploration of the internationally renowned Moomin stories through the life of its author, Tove Jansson.
10. British Summer Time Hyde Park outdoor concerts and much more!
Experience the award-winning festival in beautiful Hyde Park. Headlining the two weekends of live music are Green Day, Phil Collins, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, The Killers, Kings of Leon and Justin Bieber.
In between the two weekends of music, there will be outdoor movie nights, tennis screenings live from Wimbledon, street food stalls from all over the world, pop up bars serving draft & craft beer, wine & cocktails, live music and entertainment, the Moretti Gran Tour Soho Radio live broadcasting, Chickenshed Theatre and more.…
Where to Stay:
Drayton Gardens, SW10
A lovely two bedroom apartment, convenient for many of the famous city sights, including the Natural History museum, the Albert Hall, Hyde Park and the Saatchi Gallery.
Green Park Apartments, W1
Beautifully maintained serviced apartments located in a quiet cul-de-sac between Green Park and St. James’ Street, just off Piccadilly, close to the famous Ritz Hotel. The shops, bars and restaurants of the West End are within a short walk, and other areas of London are easily accessible by tube. There are a range of apartments from studios to 3-bedroom apartments.
Kensington Court Apartment Six
This apartment is one of six luxuriously private apartments located in one of London’s most prestigious addresses, directly across the road from Kensington Gardens and Palace. The individually designed apartments combine the space and authenticity of renting a private home with the service, facilities and security of a five star hotel. In the building there is also a gym and resistance swimming pool, and sauna, which is available for use by guests. This apartment can accommodate up to 5 people.