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The Great Spectacle: 250 Years of the Summer Exhibition

Royal Academy of Arts, London

12 Jun - 19 Aug 2018

Staged to coincide with the Royal Academy’s Summer Exhibition, this display revisits important moments in the history of the Academy and of its annual show. It explores the inception of the Summer Exhibition as a showcase for grand society portraits and epic history scenes, the role of the exhibition in the fight for women’s suffrage and the impact of two World Wars, and the exhibition’s current status as a platform for both established and unknown contemporary artists. The exhibition includes works by artists from Constable and Millais to Tracey Emin and Cornelia Parker. Find out more about ‘The Great Spectacle’ from the RA’s website.

Preview the exhibition below | See Apollo’s Picks of the Week here

Isabella, Millais

Isabella (1849), John Everett Millais. Courtesy National Museums Liverpool, Walker Art Gallery

The Leaping Horse, John Constable

The Leaping Horse (1825) John Constable. Photo: John Hammond; © Royal Academy of Arts, London

Public and Private Buildings executed by Sir John Soane between 1780 and 1815

Public and Private Buildings executed by Sir John Soane between 1780 and 1815 (1818), Joseph Michael Gandy. Courtesy Sir John Soane’s Museum, London

A Private View at the Royal Academy

A Private View at the Royal Academy (1881), William Powell Frith. Courtesy Martin Beisly

Reconstructing Seurat (Orange), Michael Craig Martin

Reconstructing Seurat (Orange) (2004), Michael Craig-Martin. Courtesy of the artist and Gagosian

Event website