The Eight Reasons to Visit an Art Exhibition this Spring

Lara Mansour   |   28 - 04 - 2017

From New York to Dubai, by way of London and Paris, there are numerous blockbuster art exhibitions opening which shouldn’t be missed. From retrospectives of the greatest artists of the past, to large-scale exhibitions by contemporary giants, there will be plenty that you will want to visit from our carefully edited selection below.


David Hockney

Mr David Hockney’s most comprehensive retrospective, held in celebration of his 80th birthday, reminds us that he was once a radical and something of an outsider. Since landing like an atom bomb on the art scene in the 1950s, his paintings of shimmering LA swimming pools, rolling Yorkshire dales, and more, have captured the imaginations of generations of people and shaped the way we see the world. Covering six decades there are more than 250 works on show, including his latest digital iPad experiments, collages, and even his work with fax machines.

9 February to 29 May

Tate Britain, London


William Eggleston – Los Alamos

The godfather of modern colour photography, Mr William Eggleston takes us on a nostalgic journey through the US between 1966 and 1974. The images on show were taken on various road trips and demonstrate Mr Eggleston’s talent for transforming the mundane into the sublime. His snapshots of diner condiments bathed in golden light, bright billboards and cars haunting car parks are a simple reminder that everything, the past included, is worth a second look.

17 March to 7 June

Foam, Amsterdam


Lala Rukh – Sagar

This exhibition marks the first solo Dubai debut for Lala Rukh, a feminist activist artist from Pakistan, and features a collection of her photographic images of the sea and coastlines. The focus falls on the serenity of the tides, punctured only by a diving seagull or the oars of a boat, as Rukh remains a voyeuristic observer. Whether it’s the breaking of day, or the coming of the night, the oceanic images provide a calming canvas for deep meditations.

13 March to 13 May

Grey Noise, Dubai


Paul Cézanne

The first exhibition devoted entirely to the portraits of Paul Cézanne, an artist hailed as ‘the father of us all’ by Matisse and Picasso, is to be staged in Paris, London, and Washington. Over 50 of Paul Cezanne’s portraits will be displayed together in this major show which will travel the world, and is likely to be one of the major exhibitions of the year. It will be a fantastic opportunity to gain a detailed understanding of part of the work of one of the 19th-century’s most significant artists, who influenced the art of Cubists, Fauvists, and successive generations of avant-garde artists.

13 June to 24 September

Musée d’Orsay, Paris


Khaled Ben Slimane – Ya Latif

Tunisian-born Khaled Ben Slimane presents a multi-disciplinary art exhibition that delves into the realm of spirituality. Inspired by the mythical practice of Sufism, the painter expresses a deep entrancement through repetitive graffiti-like calligraphy, that is rooted in the past yet exudes a contemporary aesthetic.

9 March to 8 April

Elmarsa, Dubai


Mark Chagall – Colour and Music 

Despite poverty, two world wars, ethnic persecution, Russian-French artist Mr Marc Chagall’s fantastical paintings of flying fiddlers, fiery cityscapes, lovers, and village parties, captures the joys and many horrors of the 20th century. Featuring more than 300 pieces, which span the artist’s years in Russia, Paris and his exile in New York, the exhibition includes paintings, sculptures, and tapestries, as well as Mr Chagall’s costume designs and decor, lent by the Paris Opera, the New York City Ballet and the Metropolitan Opera.

28 January to 11 June

Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, Quebec


Samia Halaby – Illuminated Space

Showcasing her transition into abstract art, this exhibition features natural organic forms, such as flowers and trees, bathed in bright vivid colours that were inspired by the works of Mark Rothko and Ad Reinhardt. Expect soothing shades and hues, mixed with an invitation for personal interpretation.

9 March to 17 June

Ayyam Gallery, Dubai


Fahrelnissa Zeid

Part of the Tate’s ongoing shift towards showcasing artists from outside the well-trodden West, this is a retrospective of a Turkish artist who lived across 90 years of the twentieth century and travelled extensively in Europe, Asia, and America. Zeid’s dazzling, jewel-like paintings, were influenced by the art of the Islamic world, and Western avant-garde abstraction.

Tate Modern, London

7 June to 15 October

By Eliza Scarborough