Autumn is for Art!
by Jen (follow Jen on Twitter: @JenBarnes207)
October is a big month in the art world in London so my list is pretty contemporary art heavy this month. As well as Frieze there are loads of incredible exhibitions opening, only a handful of which are listed here. Don’t worry- if art isn’t your thing there’s some Halloween fun and a free film festivals as well! As always, some of my fellow BrokeinLondoners have some more ideas for you in the Free Entertainment in London section.
#1 Damien Hirst’s Newport Street Gallery Opening | 8th October
It might be one of the most anticipated gallery openings this year, and regardless of how you feel about Damien Hirst- you won’t want to miss it. The inaugural exhibition at Newport Street Gallery is John Hoyland : Power Station Paintings, but don’t forget about the rest of the gallery. Damien Hirst’s personal collection includes works by the likes of Francis Bacon and Jeff Koons.
When: From 8th October, 10am-6pm, Closed Mondays
Where: Newport Street Gallery, Newport Street, London, SE11 6AJ
#2 Frieze Sculpture Park | 14th – 17th October
Frieze Art Fair isn’t free- not even close, but the Frieze Sculpture Park is and it’s always fantastic (and totally instagram-worthy). The park is being curated by Clare Lilley of Yorkshire Sculpture Park so you know the pieces will be amazing. They haven’t announced the list yet but you can keep an eye on the website- or you can just wander amongst art and autumn leaves and enjoy the surprise.
When: 14th -17th October, 5am-9pm
Where: Regent’s Park, London
#3 Deptford X Contemporary Art Festival | Until 4th October
If you’ve been looking for an excuse to go to deepest, darkest, Deptford, then look no further! Deptford X is a celebration of the creative places that make Deptford great and is the perfect introduction to the vibrant neighbourhood and the organisations that call it home. There are exhibitions and open studios, performances and events and even some workshops and tours. The best part? Everything is free! Check out the full programme online.
When: Until 4th October
Where: Deptford, London SE8
#4 Ryan Gander : Fieldwork | Until 31st October
If you walk into the Lisson Gallery for their current exhibition, Ryan Gander : Fieldwork, you’re sure to find something you like. Surrounded by what seem like everyday objects, you’ll lose yourself in the normalcy of it all, inventing your own story to accompany the things you see. Give it a go- I think you’ll like it.
When: Until 31st October, Monday – Friday: 10am – 6pm Saturday: 11am – 5pm
Where: Lisson Gallery, 27 Bell Street, London NW1 5BY
#5 Gasworks Gallery | Kemang Wa Lehulere: Sincerely yours | All month
Gasworks Gallery has recently re-opened after an extensive renovation and it’s looking fab! The current exhibition, Sincerely yours, is by a South-African artist named Kemang Wa Lehulere. It focuses on ‘the relationships between personal and collective histories, amnesia and the archive, Wa Lehulere’s practice explores how South Africa’s past continues to haunt the present.’
When: All Month, Wednesday-Sunday 12pm-6pm
Where: Gasworks, 155 Vauxhall Street, London SE11 5RH
#6 Fancy Dress & Halloween Themed Ghost Walk | 31st October
If you’re not looking for a big, boozy, night out for Halloween then have some good old-fashioned fun instead with the Canal & River Trust. Meet in Little Venice to go on a Fancy Dress & Halloween Themed Ghost Walk with your mates, wearing your silliest fancy dress costumes. I bet it will be memorable and at the very least it’s a good excuse to walk around the canals dressed as a pirate.
When: 31st October, 6pm-8pm
Where: Meet at Little Venice, Paddington. On the towpath by Westbourne Terrace Bridge, W9 2PF
#7 London Fields Free Film Festival | 23rd October – 1st November
They haven’t announced full details, but the people behind the London Fields Free Film Festival have announced that they’ve teamed up with Bechdel Test Fest to curate a couple of their screenings so I’m already sold! Follow their Facebook for details and check their website for the full programme.
When: 23rd October – 1st November
Where: Under Hungerford Bridge, Southbank Centre, London SE1 8XX
#8 Heather & Ivan Morrison : Shadow Curriculum | From 2nd October
Heather and Ivan Morrison spent two years working with teachers and students at Highshore School, a mixed needs special secondary school in South London, to create a permanent artwork – so of course they turned a Douglas fir tree into a work of art. Shadow Curriculum chronicles their experience with a documentary and objects throughout the first floor gallery spaces at South London Gallery.
When: From 2nd October, Tuesday – Sunday 11am-6pm; Wednesdays 11am-9pm
Where: South London Gallery, 65-67 Peckham Road, London SE5 8UH
#9 Smile Acoustic | 4th October
Do you love acoustic music and supporting local musicians? Good- then go to Rich Mix on the 4th October for Smile Acoustic. I think their website says it all: “Smile is a night with free cake, free entry, original songs to make you think, and a good bar in case you need a drink.”
When: 4th October, 6pm
Where: Rich Mix, 35-47 Bethnal Green Rd, London E1 6LA
#10 Ai Wei Wei’s Trees | All Month
Even if you don’t spring for a ticket to the exhibition, you can stop by the courtyard to hang out with Ai Wei Wei’s trees. A kickstarter campaign made them a reality and Ai Wei Wei received his passport back just in time to come to the installation himself. You can watch a timelapse video of the installation and then go check them out for yourself.
When: All Month, Daily 10am-6pm, except Fridays 10am-10pm
Where: Royal Academy, Burlington House, London W1J 0BD
You may also want to check out the top 10 free events in London this autumn.