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London Art Week Highlights

7 July 2015

There’s plenty on offer in the capital in July with the arrival of the third edition of London Art Week (3–10 July). Drawing on the huge success of the last two years, 47 participants – 44 galleries and three auction houses – will show an impressive selection of paintings, sculptures and drawings from antiquity to the present day. Focused around the galleries of Mayfair and St James’s, the event stresses the global importance of London’s art trade.

(c. 1535), Giovanni Antonio Bazzi (known as Il Sodoma).

Holy Family with the Infant St John the Baptist (c. 1535), Giovanni Antonio Bazzi (known as Il Sodoma). Coll & Cortés at London Art Week

The breadth of works on offer is impressive. Among the painting highlights is Holy Family with the Infant St John the Baptist (c. 1535), an oil on panel by Giovanni Antonio Bazzi (known as Il Sodoma) brought by Coll & Cortés. Agnew’s presents the meticulous Portrait of a gentleman, bust-length, in a white ruff (c. 1580), attributed to either the Haarlem or Amsterdam School and on display as part of ‘Portraiture through the Ages’, the inaugural exhibition at the dealer’s new premises in St James’s Place. At Rafael Valls is ‘The Painter’s Menagerie’, which displays a selection of animal and bird paintings from the 17th to the 19th centuries. Another notable painting exhibition is the Weiss Gallery’s showcase of works by the court portraitist Frans Pourbus the Younger – it marks the first time that so many works by the artist have been privately assembled and exhibited together. Only the Medici collection in the Uffizi and Palazzo Pitti, with 10, has more.

Sam Fogg’s expansive exhibition, ‘Reclaiming Antiquity; creation and revival before the Fall of Rome and the Renaissance’, considers examples of Cosmati and opus sectile work made between the 11th and 13th centuries. The week’s sculpture highlights include the display of a rediscovered dramatic marble sculpture of Lucretia (c. 1704) attributed to Philippe Bertrand at Galerie Sismann, and a wonderful original plaster cast model of Clytie of around 1868 by George Frederic Watts. The latter forms part of ‘From the Salon’ at Daniel Katz, a display of paintings and sculptures that have previously been seen at salon and academy shows – including the Salon in Paris and London’s Royal Academy of Arts.

(c. 1704), attr. to Philippe Bertrand.

Lucretia (c. 1704), attr. to Philippe Bertrand. Galerie Sismann at London Art Week

London Art Week also sees many outstanding works on paper offered, such as the selection of 18th- and 19th-century British watercolours and drawings at Martyn Gregory, which includes an accomplished sketch of a waterfall by David Cox. A precise drapery study of St John the Evangelist by Carlo Maratta is at Florian Härb, made in preparation for the artist’s 1686 altarpiece in Santa Maria del Popolo, Rome. Stephen Ongpin presents a selection of Italian drawings ranging from the early Renaissance to Futurism – everything from Ghirlandaio to Giacomo Balla. Some contemporary work is also featured, such as To the Studios of around 1977, a vibrant, hurried pastel by Frank Auerbach.

Alongside London Art Week a host of concurrent events are staged across the city. Osborne Samuel presents the first major Henry Moore retrospective since Tate Britain’s show in 2010, featuring early unseen pieces by the artist from his sister Elizabeth’s personal collection (until 27 June). Moore is also on display at Bowman Sculpture in an exhibition that pairs him with Helaine Blumenfeld (until 30 June), and which reunites their work 30 years after their seminal exhibition at the Alex Rosenberg Gallery in New York. Previously unseen works by both artists drawn from private collections are shown alongside sculptures from the 1985 show.

(1959), Joseph Lacasse.

Mouvement (1959), Joseph Lacasse. Whitford Fine Art, London

Complementing the current Sonia Delaunay retrospective at Tate Modern (until 9 August), Whitford Fine Art presents the abstract canvases of Joseph Lacasse, whose work was championed by Delaunay throughout the 1920s (5 June–3 July). The show also reveals Lacasse’s influence on that other great colourist, Serge Poliakoff. Jonathan Cooper Park Walk Gallery celebrates 15 years of partnership with the still life painter James Gillick, and presents 19 loaned works spanning his career (11 June–4 July), while new works by leading Venetian glassmaker Lino Tagliapietra are on show at Mallett (until 4 July). Finally, don’t miss the chance to see prints by Bruce Nauman at Sims Reed Gallery in the Economist Building, organised in collaboration with Galerie Ronny Van de Velde (24 June–17 July). Celebrated for his performance-based works that circle around language and the human body, this exhibition of some 30 prints spanning the years 1970–2006 reveals the extent to which printmaking links to Nauman’s wider artistic practice.

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