Yayoi Kusama London summer bonanza with new Elizabeth Line work and a Royal Parks pumpkin sculpture
May 29, 2024
Graham Franciose’s Dreamlike Paintings in Watercolor and Gouache Tell a Snippet of a Story
May 29, 2024
Yayoi Kusama London summer bonanza with new Elizabeth Line work and a Royal Parks pumpkin sculpture
May 29, 2024
Graham Franciose’s Dreamlike Paintings in Watercolor and Gouache Tell a Snippet of a Story
May 29, 2024

Tate Modern is to host the first full-scale UK museum exhibition dedicated to the trailblazing Australian performance artist Leigh Bowery, a celebrated muse of the artist Lucian Freud, early next year. The exhibition (27 February-2 September 2025), a centrepiece of Tate’s 2025 programme, “will span his emergence in London’s 1980s club scene through to his outrageous performances in galleries, theatres and the street, using the body as a shape-shifting tool in ways that would go on to inspire Alexander McQueen, Lady Gaga and many more,” says a Tate statement.

The show, organised in collaboration with Nicola Rainbird (the director and owner of the Estate of Leigh Bowery), will focus on his collaborations with artists such as Michael Clark, Charles Atlas, Nick Knight, Stephen Willats, and Freud, whose 1991 portrait of Bowery is at present on display at Tate Britain.

Emily Kam Kngwarray, Ntang Dreaming, 1989

Other Tate Modern highlights next year include an exhibition of works by the 20th-century Aboriginal artist Emily Kam Kngwarray (10 July 2025-13 January 2026) which is billed as the first large-scale presentation of her work ever held in Europe. Kngwarray (1910-96) was from Utopia, an Aboriginal community 250km north-east of Alice Springs in Australia’s Northern Territory. From 1988 until her death eight years later, Kngwarray produced around 3,000 paintings—roughly one per day. The show due to open at Tate recently closed at the National Gallery of Australia in Canberra.

Ben Enwonwu, The Dancer (Agbogho Mmuo—Maiden Spirit Mask), 1962. The picture will feature in Nigerian Modernism at Tate Modern

A survey of Nigerian Modernism (8 October 2025-Spring 2026), which focuses on Nigerian artists working before and after the decade of national independence from British colonial rule in 1960, also opens at Tate Modern next year. Artists featured include Ladi Kwali and Ben Enwonwu.

The crowdpleasing Pablo Picasso, whose legacy has come under scrutiny in the past decade, also takes centre stage at Tate with the exhibition Picasso: The Three Dancers (25 September-Spring 2026). “Tate Modern’s exhibition tells the story of this landmark painting [made in 1925] through a selection of key works from across Picasso’s career, exploring themes of sex, death, and the politics of dance,” adds the Tate statement.

Ed Atkins, Untitled, 2023

Tate Britain begins 2025 with a show dedicated to the UK artist Ed Atkins (2 April-25 August 2025). The exhibition will include paintings, writing, embroideries and drawings alongside Atkins’s moving-image works. In the autumn, the spotlight falls on the Surrealist photographer Lee Miller (2 October-15 February 2026). “With around 250 vintage and modern prints, including those never previously displayed, the exhibition reveals Miller’s poetic vision and fearless spirit,” says the Tate statement. Two of Britain’s most revered artists, JMW Turner and John Constable, are compared and contrasted in an ambitious show exploring the “heady rivalry” between the pair in the 250th year of their birth (27 November 2025-12 April 2026).

Heady rivalry: John Constable, The White Horse, 1819 (top) and JMW Turner, The Decline of the Carthaginian Empire, around 1817.

Tate St Ives will present shows dedicated to the Polish-Romani artist Małgorzata Mirga-Tas (until 5 January 2025); the 1930s UK Surrealist Ithell Colquhoun (1 February-5 May 2025); the US artist Liliane Lijn who made important kinetic works (May-October) and the Lithuanian-born artist Emilija Škarnulytė (October 2025-January 2026).

Tate Liverpool, which is closed until 2026 for renovations, has taken up residency at RIBA North where it will present a programme of collection displays, family activities and public events including part of the Liverpool Biennial in the summer of 2025.

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