Emma Clarendon selects some exhibitions to look out for next year…

1985 Day to Night Barbie Credits: Mattel

Barbie exhibition, The Design Museum: this new exhibition will help celebrate the 65th birthday of Barbie and will look at how the doll has evolved and changed over the years. This exhibition has been three years in the making and will explore the story of Barbie through a  design lens, including fashion, architecture, furniture and vehicle design. Further details have yet to be announced.

(c)Marco Bahler

NAOMI, Victoria and Albert Museum: from the 22nd June 2024, the V&A will focus on the career of fashion model Naomi Campbell. Starting from her being scouted in Covent Garden aged just 15, Naomi quickly rose to prominence in the industry, making history a few years later when, at 18, she became the first Black model to feature on the cover of Paris Vogue (August 1988), the exhibition will then chart her creative collaborations, activism and far-reaching cultural impact. Produced in collaboration with the model herself, this exhibition will draw upon Campbell’s own extensive wardrobe of haute couture and leading ready-to-wear ensembles along with loans from designer archives and objects from V&A collection. In addition to clothing, fashion photography will also feature prominently. Striking imagery by leading photographers such as Nick
Knight, Steven Meisel and Tim Walker, will form an installation curated by Edward Enninful OBE.

Van Gogh: Poets & Lovers, National Gallery: on display from the 14th September 2024, this exhibition will bring together many of Van Gogh’s paintings from across the globe – including some which are very rarely displayed and paired with his drawings. The focus will be on over a period two years in the south of France in which he revolutionised his style in a symphony of poetic colour and texture, inspired by poets, writers and artists. The exhibition will feature Starry Night over the Rhône’ (1888, Musée d’Orsay) and ‘The Yellow House’ (1888, Van Gogh Museum), as well as our own ‘Sunflowers’ (1888) and ‘Van Gogh’s Chair’ (1889.

Legion: Life in the Roman Army, British Museum: this new exhibition on display at the British Museum from the 1st February 2024 will take visitors across the empire, as well as through the life and service of a real Roman soldier, Claudius Terentianus, from enlistment and campaigns to enforcing occupation then finally, in Terentianus’ case, retirement. Taking those visiting through the Roman military history, the exhibition will feature objects such as letters written on papyri by soldiers from Roman Egypt and the Vindolanda tablets – some of the oldest surviving handwritten documents in Britain. The tablets, from the fort near Hadrian’s wall, reveal first-hand what daily life was like for soldiers and the women, children and enslaved people who accompanied them.

Yoko Ono with Glass Hammer 1967 from HALF-A-WIND SHOW, Lisson Gallery, London, 1967. Photograph: Clay Perry © Yoko Ono

Yoko Ono: Music of the Mind, Tate Modern: this exhibition will focus on key moments through the conceptual and performance artist’s career. This includes her years in London from 1966 to 1971, where she met John Lennon and spans across six decades. The display will also feature and explore some of Ono’s most talked about and controversial artworks and performances, from Cut Piece (1964), where people were invited to cut off her clothing, to her banned Film No.4 (Bottoms) (1966-67) which she created as a ‘petition for peace’. It will be displayed from the 15th February until the 1st September 2024.

Monet & London: Views of the Thames, The Courtauld Gallery: on display from the 27th September, this exhibition will highlight the works that the artist created between 1899 and 1901on his visits to the capital and depicting Charing Cross Bridge, Waterloo Bridge and the Houses of Parliament which were then unveiled at a landmark exhibition in Paris in 1904. the artist had wanted to display them in London in 1905 but this never happened and so this is the first time these works have been the focus of an exhibition.


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