September Monthly Arts Round-Up


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September is looking like a good time for art lovers in London. Not only will we see the reopening of more of our most cherished and frequented galleries, but there is a treasure-trove of online exhibitions, film screenings, discussions and courses too for those who’d prefer to bring the gallery to them. 

Saatchi will be welcoming the public back this Autumn – with an all-new exhibition showcasing the work of some of the next generation’s most talented artists. London Grads Now will feature contributions from over 150 graduating students from the capital’s leading fine arts colleges; with more than 200 works on display – and many for the first time. 

As part of their ongoing commitment to providing a platform for emerging British artists, Saatchi have dedicated seven of their gallery spaces to house the graduate’s work – each individually curated by the students and lecturers themselves. The exhibition runs from September 3rd – 25th, and tickets for non-members are £3. All visitors, including members are encouraged to book a timed ticket online to attend.  

“This exhibition of London-wide MA graduates is an incredible opportunity to celebrate the work of a new generation of artists and recognise the resilience of the human spirit”. – Juan Bolivar (Curator for the selection of works from UAL: Camberwell, Chelsea, Wimbledon).  

From a glimpse at tomorrow’s creative pool of talent, to the work of a bonafide veteran: the art of Georg Baselitz, one of Germany’s most celebrated artists has encompassed everything from painting, sculpture and printmaking – in an impressive career that has lasted over 50 years. You can catch his latest exhibition, Darkness Goldness from September 4th in Mason’s Yard at White Cube Gallery. 

Those who may be familiar with the work of Baselitz would probably recall his numerous pieces centred around hands and feet; most notably his Heroes series of the mid-1960’s: a collection of work depicting numerous figures amongst dilapidated backdrops with over-accentuated hands. That notorious part of our anatomy most difficult to draw, Baselitz has once again channeled inspiration from these extremities for Darkness Goldness; with oil and gold painted hands emerging from out of blackness, his more realistic ink-on-paper drawings, and a collection of the artist’s new sculptures – including a pair of fire-gilded bronze bas-relief hands. 

Tate Modern have added a number of exciting online events to their calendar this September that you can tune into, with an opportunity too to join in the discussion. Kicking off first will be the screening of a new video essay Sordid Scandal; courtesy of Argentinian artist Amala Ulman.

Described as ‘a comic exploration of identity and artistic persona’, Ulman’s work here is presented in the visual form of a PowerPoint presentation – and is inspired by the legacy of Andy Warhol’s oeuvre. The gallery will be hosting an online discussion between Ulman and Gilda Williams on the 7th which aims to further explore the themes in the artist’s work, as well as the influence of Warhol. 

Making it’s return to Tate Modern from September 17th too will be Queer and Now; an immersive platform for the LGBTQIA+ community to have their voices heard alongside queer artists, activists and cultural producers – with a trio of free live events in partnership with UK Black Pride. Currently in its third year, Queer and Now is an opportunity to contribute, critique or just celebrate creativity in queer culture. 

If you happen to be out-and-about by the riverside this month, be sure to make a detour past Hayward Gallery at Southbank Centre – with an outdoor exhibition celebrating the contributions of key workers and frontline staff during the pandemic. Everyday Heroes features more than 40 portraits of ordinary people doing extraordinary things in our local community. 

“At this particular moment, perhaps more than ever, this kind of outdoor exhibition can play a crucial role in furnishing the inspiration which visual art and poetry provide to our collective imagination and civic life” – Ralph Rugoff (Hayward Gallery Director)

South London Gallery has a handful of free events to look out for this month; with an online film screening on the 9th and a brand new exhibition scheduled for the 23rd. Curated by local artists Sophie Cundale and Ben Gomes, What You Could Have Won is a visual exploration that digs up relics from childhood and elements of popular culture to shake up the way we interpret and understand our realities. 

Belgian artist Ann Veronica Janssens takes centre stage this September too, with Hot Pink Turquoise: the first major presentation of her work in London – which spans everything from installations, projections, immersive environments and sculptures. Occupying the main space for the first half of the show is Untitled (Blue Glitter), which expands on her fascination with the interaction of colour and light; the latter half of the show makes room for an interactive experience with Bikes, 2001: where visitors are invited to cycle around the main space on bikes equipped with mirrored discs that reflect light across the gallery’s walls.  

Independent art space BSMT in Dalston will be facilitating the first solo show from acclaimed typography artist Dave Towers, which will coincide with the gallery’s reopening from September 4th, and be on display until the 20th. Riding on the commercial success of several notable design campaigns for some of the world’s most recognisable brands, you’ve most probably come across his typography out there in the wild and not realised it. 

Indian Tree by Howard Hodgkin – Image courtesy of the artist

It’s still not too late to catch a number of acclaimed exhibitions this month too – like Accelerate Your Escape at Whitechapel Gallery; showcasing contemporary art from the Hiscox Collection, which is on public display for the first time in two artist-curated exhibitions. Works by Etel Adnan, David Hockney, Joan Miró, Pablo Picasso and many more have been handpicked for the first instalment by British painter Gary Hume. 

Those that are fretting over the enforced shutdown of clubs and music festivals are encouraged to head down to The Design Museum for their electronic music fix. Electronic: From Kraftwerk to the Chemical Brothers features a plethora of sights, sounds and various multimedia – tracing the roots of dance music and rave culture from dancefloors the world over. Expect to see everything from sound reactive visual installations, immersive soundscapes, fashion items and DJ paraphernalia.  

Finally, The Photographer’s Gallery has a lot in store for September too; including A Kitchen of One’s Own: a brand new digital project by xtine burrough and Sabrina Starnaman – which consists of a dataset of first-person videos of life in the kitchen, remixed and edited to serve as the backdrop for social commentary on wider issues like sexual harassment and politics. 

From September 9th one can also have the chance to view a collection of reimagined found objects and old photographs that have formed the inspiration for British artist Julie Cockburn’s Balancing Act: a catalogue of playful work that was produced during lockdown. 

“While in isolation, I noticed how much we connected by sharing our creativity on social media in an act of showing and being seen – our bread, our gardens, our dances, our cardboard animated projects. This is my show and tell”. – Julie Cockburn

Article written by Sonny Arifien @sonnyandhispen

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