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Events in Art and Archaeology

Sebastiano del Piombo: <EM>The Visitation</EM>, 1518 - 1519© The National Gallery, London
Sebastiano del Piombo: The Visitation, 1518 - 1519
© The National Gallery, London
Michelangelo & Sebastiano
LONDON  •  The National Gallery  •  15 March - 25 June 2017

Having met in Rome in 1511, as Michelangelo was finishing his decoration of the Sistine Chapel ceiling, Sebastiano and he became friends and began collaborating artistically.

Their meeting sparked a remarkable 25-year friendship and partnership; yielding outstanding works of art that neither could have created without the other – against a backdrop of war and religious conflict, but also of great intellectual energy and artistic innovation.

Central to the exhibition are two of their collaborations: the 'Pietà' for S. Francesco in Viterbo (c.1512–16) and The Raising of Lazarus, painted for the Cathedral of Narbonne in France, and one of the foundational works in the National Gallery Collection.

The exhibition also features the exceptional loan of Michelangelo’s The Risen Christ (1514–15) from the Church of S. Vincenzo Martire in Bassano Romano, Italy, and a cutting-edge recreation of the Borgherini Chapel in S. Pietro in Montorio, Rome – decorated by Sebastiano to partial designs by Michelangelo.

Comprising paintings, drawings, sculpture, and letters, the show documents the correspondence between the artists.

The National Gallery Website

Contact: The National Gallery
Trafalgar Square
London WC2N 5DN
Tel: (44) 0800 912 69 58

Utagawa Hiroshige: Travellers surprised by sudden rain (Shono hakuu), 1833-4Woodcut on paperPallant House Gallery, Chichester (Hussey Bequest, Chichester District Council, 1985)© Pallant House Gallery, Chichester, UK.
Utagawa Hiroshige: Travellers surprised by sudden rain (Shono hakuu), 1833-4
Woodcut on paper
Pallant House Gallery, Chichester (Hussey Bequest, Chichester District Council, 1985)
© Pallant House Gallery, Chichester, UK.
The Woodcut: From Dürer to Now
CHICHESTER  •  Pallant House Gallery  •  8 March - 25 June 2017

A new exhibition at Pallant House Gallery showcases highlights from the Gallery’s print collection to trace the history of the woodcut, from the Northern Renaissance and the Japanese tradition of ukiyo-e prints to contemporary artists working today. The exhibition includes works by artists such as Albrecht Dürer, Utagawa Hiroshiga, Edward Wadsworth, Ben Nicholson and contemporary artists including Rebecca Salter and Emma Stibbons.

Woodcut is a relief printing technique that first emerged in Japan in the 8th century. Cruder versions of woodcuts began to appear in Europe around the 13th century and developed considerably with the advent of mass-production of paper a century later. The western tradition of the woodcut is often said to have culminated in the late 15th century with the work of Albrecht Dürer who achieved stunning details in his woodblock designs.

It is unlikely that Dürer cut any woodblocks himself but having trained in Michael Wolgemut’s Nuremberg studio (then the centre of German publishing) he gained a great understanding of the technique’s potential and how to work with the master block cutters. The image Repose on the Flight into Egypt (c. 1504), featured in the exhibition, is one of his series of woodcuts illustrating The Life of the Virgin. In spite of the traditional subject matter, his treatment of the theme was revolutionary in approach, size, and subtlety of technique. Dürer’s interest in scientific theories of perspective can also be seen in the elaborate architectural forms in the background.

By the end of the 16th century, the woodcut began to fall out of favour in Europe due to new technological printing processes that favoured engravings. In Japan however, the woodcut printing technique known as mokuhanga continued to develop. Best known for its use in the ukiyo-e (loosely translated as ‘pictures of a floating world’) artistic genre, mokuhanga used water-based inks, which provide a wider range of vivid colours, glazes and transparency than the oil-based inks often used in western woodcuts. The prints created using these inks demonstrated extraordinary technical skill. An example of this can be seen in Utagawa Hiroshige’s Travellers surprised by sudden rain (Shono haku-u) (1833-34), part of his most famous series The Fifty-Three Stations of the Tokaido Road (Tokaido gojusan tsugi no uchi) (1834). The print demonstrates Hiroshige’s sensitive treatment of light and colour, particularly the effects of falling rain.

Both European and Japanese woodcut traditions were initially reliant on a collaborative system that included artists and designers as well as carvers and printers who often went unacknowledged. By the early 20th century, both were struggling with competition from mechanical processes such as lithography and photography.

Pallant House Gallery Website

Contact: Pallant House Gallery
9 North Pallant
West Sussex
PO19 1TJ
Tel: (44) 01243 774557

Events in Pop Culture and Cinema

Theatre: Obsession: based on the film by Luchino Visconti
LONDON  •  Barbican Theatre  •  19 April - 20 May 2017


Jude Law plays the magnetically handsome, down-at-heel Gino in a new stage adaptation of Visconti’s penetrating social drama directed by Ivo van Hove.Drifter Gino, powerful and graceful as a puma, encounters Giuseppe and his much younger, trapped wife Hanna (played by Halina Reijn) at their roadside restaurant and petrol station. He and Hanna are so irresistibly attracted to one another they begin an affair while plotting to murder her husband. But the crime does not unite them in this chilling story where passion can lead only to destruction.

Visconti’s first feature film Obsession (1943) gave rise to Italian neorealism, a cinematic movement highlighting the struggles of ordinary people in a time of upheaval. As Van Hove’s fourth Visconti production, it features a company of Dutch and British actors led by Law, whose charismatic stage and screen performances have established him as one of the foremost actors of his generation.

Obsession is one of three Toneelgroep Amsterdam productions directed here by Ivo van Hove in 2017.

Conceived and directed by: Ivo van Hove
Set design and lighting: Jan Versweyveld
Adaptation and dramaturgy: Jan Peter Gerrits
English language version: Simon Stephens
Video design: Tal Yarden
Composer and sound design: Eric Sleichim
Sound system design: Tom Gibbons
Costumes: An d’Huys
UK casting: Julia Horan CDG
Associate director: Jeff James

With Jude Law, Robert de Hoog, Chukwudi Iwuji, Aysha Kala, Halina Reijn and Gijs Scholten van Aschat.

Barbican Centre Website

Detailed schedule information:
7:00 pm

Contact: Barbican Centre
Silk Street
London EC2Y 8DS
Tel: (44) 20 76 38 88 91

Wildlife Photographer of the Year© Sam Hobson
Wildlife Photographer of the Year
© Sam Hobson
Wildlife Photographer of the Year
LONDON  •  Natural History Museum, London  •  21 October 2016 - 10 September 2017

This year’s competition was the most competitive to date, attracting almost 50,000 entries from professionals and amateurs across 95 countries.

Judged by a panel of international experts, winning images are selected for their creativity, originality and technical excellence.

The exhibition features the collection of 100 exceptional images, revealing the astonishing diversity of life on our planet and highlighting our crucial role in protecting it.

Natural History Museum, London Website

Contact: Natural History Museum, London
Cromwell Rd, London SW7 5BD
United Kingdom
Tel: (44) 20 7942 500

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