As we open our umbrellas in anticipation of April showers, there are few signs of a cultural draught in London. With Tracey Emin’s unmade bed, Edward Snowden’s hard drives, Kristin Scott Thomas (aka Her Majesty), Paul Simon and Sting all taking shelter in London’s premier concert venues, galleries and theatres this month, there has never been a better time to check out our top April events in London, come rain or come shine. Stay with us at one of our central London hotels and you’ll be mere minutes from the action.
BP Spotlight: Tracey Emin and Francis Bacon
For the first time in fifteen years, Tracey Emin’s controversial My Bed makes its return home to the Tate Britain. Now that the 90’s hysteria around “Young British Artists” has subsided, Emin hopes this work will be seen as “a portrait of a younger woman and how time affects all of us”. Installed beside some of Emin’s recent drawings and two Francis Bacon paintings chosen by Emin herself, this is a must for modern art enthusiasts and fans of 90’s nostalgia.
From 31st March 2015 – June 2016.
All of This Belongs to You
To coincide with the UK general election, the V&A’s exhibition All of This Belongs to You gives visitors the chance to explore the influence that public institutions, like the V&A, have over our experience and civic identity. One of our favourite April events in London, highlights include the hard drives leaked by Edward Snowden, to stress the paradox between our desire to share our lives online with our desire for privacy.
From 1st April – 19th July 2015.
Sting and Paul Simon at The O2
It was 1970 when he parted with Art Garfunkel, but Paul Simon still knows a good collaboration when he sees one. With almost 30 Grammy’s between them, Sting and Simon will perform hits from their back-catalogues, offer up soulful duets and put their own spin on each other’s classic singles.
From 15th – 16th April 2015.
In the early 20th Century, painting power couple Sonia and Robert Delaunay developed their own brand of cubism using colour theory and geometric abstraction. “Orphism”, as it became known, is given centre-stage at the Tate Modern’s showcase, which features paintings, clothes and textiles from Sonia’s six decades as an artist.
From 15th April – 9th August 2015.
London Original Print Fair
Marking its 30th anniversary this year, the London Original Print Fair is one of our top April events in London for budding and established collectors. Between Old and New Masters, etchings, engravings and lithographs, the 50 prominent print dealers exhibiting here at the Royal Academy are sure to have something to pique the interest.
From 23rd – 26th April 2015.
Sony World Photography Awards Exhibition
With selfie-sticks now banned at the National Gallery, April is the month to re-focus. The Sony World Photography Awards Exhibition celebrates the best contemporary images among more than 130,000 entries from around the world. You’re certain to get some perspective at Somerset House, where the winners’ work and other shortlisted snaps will be on display.
From 24th April – 10th May 2015.
Kristin Scott Thomas takes the baton (or sceptre) from Helen Mirren in a new West End run of Stephen Daldry’s The Audience. Inspired by weekly meetings or “audiences” between the Queen and 12 successive British Prime Ministers, their encounters go from clashes to confession in a script that’s both humorous and heartfelt.
From 21st April 2015.
The BP Exhibition: Indigenous Australia
Surviving colonisation by the British and the pressures of modern society springing up around them, the fortitude of Australia’s indigenous populations is something to be admired. With a variety of languages and customs which continue today, The British Museum celebrates the triumphs of these communities and, with exhibits including a shield recovered after a battle with Captain Cook’s forces in 1770, acknowledges a history of exploitation as well.
From 23rd April – 2nd August 2015.
Header image: 2015 Sony World Photography Awards Exhibition © Melissa Little