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Beyond the blockbusters – five more shows to catch in 2019

11 January 2019

‘The Body Electric’ at the Walker Art Centre, Minneapolis (30 March–21 July)

As we become increasingly habituated to screens and other forms of technological mediation, how is our perception of the human body changing? This timely exhibition will explore a range of artist’s responses to the advent of the digital age, from the television assemblages of Nam June Paik in the 1980s and ’90s (also the subject of a major monographic show at Tate Modern this summer) to the photographic work of Andrea Crespo and Martine Syms.

DICKGIRL 3D(X), Sidsel Meineche Hansen

DICKGIRL 3D(X) (installation view; 2016), Sidsel Meineche Hansen. Courtesy of the artist and Rodeo, London

 ‘Tribute to Cosimo I’ at the Uffizi Galleries, Florence (6 June–29 September) 

In 1569 the second Cosimo de’ Medici – named by his godfather, Pope Leo X, to ‘revive the memory’ of his illustrious ancestor – became the first Grand Duke of Tuscany. To mark the 500th anniversary of his birth, the Uffizi Galleries have organised a ‘tripytch’ of exhibitions. ‘The Prince’s 100 Lances’ will focus on the story of the Landsknechte – the Medici family’s personal guard corps – with a display of paintings, engravings, weapons and armour. ‘Weaving a Biography’ will feature the Stories of Cosimo I, a cycle of eight tapestries recording events in his life. Finally, ‘The Peasant and his Barrel’ focuses on the tradition of garden sculpture which had its roots in the Boboli Garden at the Palazzo Pitti, where Cosimo and his family lived from the mid 1550s.

Giorgio Vasari presents his plans for expanding the Palazzio Vecchio and for the new Uffizi manufactory to Cosimo I

Giorgio Vasari presents his plans for expanding the Palazzio Vecchio and for the new Uffizi manufactory to Cosimo I (1660–62), designed by Cosimo Ulivelli, woven by Sabatino Galeazzi and Matteo Benvenuti under the direction of Giovanni Pollastri. Camera dei Deputati, Montecitorio, Roma

‘A Different View: African Ceramics from the Collection of Franz, Duke of Bavaria’ at the Design Museum, Munich (27 September–29 March 2020)

With the combined gift and permanent loan of some 1,300 ceramics from Africa by Franz, Duke of Bavaria in July, the Design Museum in Munich has greatly diversified its collections of pottery. This year these 19th- and 20th-century ceramics, which come from all over sub-Saharan Africa, will go on display for the first time. The exhibition will consider the style of these objects and present them in the context of ceramic production from the same era in the rest of the world.

Vessel (19–20th century), Bobo or Bwa, Burkina Faso.

Vessel (19–20th century), Bobo or Bwa, Burkina Faso. Photo: A. Laurenzo; © Die Neue Sammlung

‘Gauguin Portraits’ at the National Gallery, London (7 October–26 January 2020)

After the great success of the National Portrait Gallery’s ‘Cézanne Portraits’ in 2017–18, the National Gallery is presenting another look at a post-Impressionist master through the lens of portraiture. ‘Gauguin Portraits’ includes around 50 works from the French artist’s later years.

Self-Portrait Dedicated to Carrière, 1888 or 1889, Gauguin

Self-Portrait Dedicated to Carrière (1888–89), Paul Gauguin. National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.

‘El Greco’ at the Grand Palais, Paris (16 October–10 February 2020)

This is, somewhat remarkably, the first monographic exhibition on El Greco to take place in France. A collaboration between the Grand Palais, the Louvre, and the Art Institute of Chicago (where it travels in early 2020), the display will offer a rounded picture of the artist’s career, showing how he adapted Venetian and Roman influences in his mature work.

The Assumption of the Virgin, El Greco

The Assumption of the Virgin (1577–79), El Greco. Photo: © Art Institute of Chicago, Dist. RMN-Grand Palais

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