Emin’s nudes, Sickert’s bedroom and fictional photography – the week in art | Art and design

Exhibition of the week

Tracey Emin
Devastating new self-portraits and nudes by one of Britain’s most exciting artists.
Carl Freedman Gallery, Margate, 24 April to 19 June.

Also showing

Walter Sickert
A welcome full-scale survey of this brilliant and challenging painter whose bedroom scenes in early 20th century London anticipate Bacon and Freud.
Tate Britain, London, 28 April to 18 September.

Rodney Graham
Cubistic paintings by another noted conceptual artist who has turned to canvas.
Lisson Gallery, London, 26 April to 25 June.

Jeff Wall
Photographs that richly balance fact, fiction and quotations from art history by this important creative thinker.
White Cube Mason’s Yard, London, 27 April to 25 June.

Amie Siegel
A film that investigates the place of the 18th-century artist George Stubbs in British culture and society.
Thomas Dane Gallery, London, 27 April to 23 July.

Image of the week

Anish Kapoor’s Mother As a Mountain (1985). Photograph: David Levene/the Guardian

At the Accademia and Palazzo Manfrin in Venice, Anish Kapoor is debuting a body of sculptural work coated in what has been called “Kapoor black”. Vantablack is a nanotechnology, produced by a British company, that absorbs 99.96% of visible light. The effect of the light-absorbing coating is uncanny. Seen head on, the blacker-than-black sculptures appear two-dimensional. Then, when the angle of view is changed, they reveal themselves to be solid shapes. Read the full story here.

What we learned

Pavlo Makov decided he had to represent Ukraine at the Venice Biennale

A friend of Francis Bacon turned his back on the Tate – taking an extensive collection of art with him

A “one in a million” Dutch golden age painting was found in a storeroom in Australia

The story of Henry VIII’s Black trumpeter will be told at Walker Art Gallery in Liverpool

Turkish artist Kutluğ Ataman sent a minaret to the moon

Clandestine painter Everlyn Nicodemus is unstoppable

A landmark exhibition explored the history of the slave trade that is rarely taught

Sonia Boyce’s glorious cacophony of Black female voices has hit Venice

Russia continued to culturally uncouple from the west

There’s a fine line between immersive art shows and theme parks

Masterpiece of the week

Rachel Ruysch’s Flowers in a Glass Vase With a Tulip, 1716
Photograph: Ian Dagnall Computing/Alamy

Rachel Ruysch’s Flowers in a Glass Vase With a Tulip, 1716
The play of light and darkness and subtle variations of colour in this painting make for a deep, subtle poetry. Those red, pink and white petals emerging from the shadows, contrasting with muted blues and browns, are so alive and ephemeral. The twisting, flowing forms of different blooms suggest the infinite complexity and endless change of life. You feel, not just these bright and quieter colours, but the silky, skinlike textures of the flowers. All life is here – and the shadow of death. Rachel Ruysch turns a simple subject into a grand baroque history of the world. She specialised in flower painting but while she was the first woman enrolled in the artists’ society in the Hague, her choice of subject should not be seen as constrained by gender rules. Dutch golden age artists did concentrate on ordinary visible things and many men painted flowers, too. Ruysch is one of the last great pracitioners of the Dutch art of still life.
National Gallery, London

Don’t forget

To follow us on Twitter: @GdnArtandDesign.

Sign up to the Art Weekly newsletter

If you don’t already receive our regular roundup of art and design news via email, please sign up here.

Get in Touch

If you have any questions or comments about any of our newsletters please email [email protected]

Anita Shire

Next Post

New art gallery debuts this weekend in Saratoga Springs – Saratogian

Tue Apr 26 , 2022
SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. —  A new local art gallery called Cottage of Art & Design is making its debut this weekend in the Spa City’s Beekman Street Arts District. Located at 73 Beekman St. in Saratoga Springs, Cottage of Art & Design was recently founded by six local artists – […]