Grab a seat on the Art Bus and tour East End galleries
Beer, and a private bus to take you to the galleries — what could be better?
It's a bit of an insider secret that on the first Thursday of every month, a bus tour runs from 7pm to 9pm to selected galleries in east London, starting and ending at Whitechapel Gallery.
The Whitechapel has instituted this incredibly easy way to see a slew of galleries after work. More than 150 are involved, running free events, exhibitions and private views during this late-night opening.
There's a First Thursday online map to guide you — a new one's uploaded every month. We recommend you end the evening at Whitechapel Gallery's new late bar, After Hours, open Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 6pm-11pm for wine, craft beers, charcuterie and cheese.
- Tickets for First Thursdays Art Bus Tours are £9.50/£7.50 concs. Online booking essential
- Visit www.whitechapelgallery.org/first-thursdays/
- After Hours at The Whitechapel Refectory: www.whitechapelgallery.org/after-hours/
Make yourself at home in a corridor
Do Ho Suh is one of those artists whose work we can safely say is all about connecting — across cultures, and the connection between the individual and the group. In a word, it's about home. Having a home, returning home and, in Suh's latest series of works, recreating a home.
Having left South Korea, firstly for New York, and now resident in London, he traditionally uses his art to memorialise the places he has lived in. At his latest exhibition at Victoria Miro Gallery, above, Suh has constructed the rooms and staircases of his previous homes out of brightly coloured mesh fabrics. A cross between sculpture and a dream-like experience, it makes you think about what home can and should mean.
"I see life as a passageway, with no fixed beginning or destination. We tend to focus on the destination all the time and forget about the in-between spaces" Do Ho Suh
These modules of space were designed to be packed and moved, much like clothing, as he travelled between continents. It's Suh's biggest show in London since his Serpentine retrospective in 2002, and has huge relevance in this time of questioning identity and changing borders.
- Victoria Miro Gallery, Wharf Road, N1: www.victoria-miro.com/exhibitions/
Any colour, as long as it's white
The focus is on white at Ordovas gallery, 25 Savile Row, where the Monochrome exhibition features sculpture in various tones of the shade by artists including Barbara Hepworth, Isamu Noguchi and Richard Serra. It's the first time Alberto Giacometti's Femme has been on public display since it's creation almost 80 years ago. Coming up later this year are Monochrome at the National Gallery and Giacometti at Tate Modern.
The Plasticine Kiss is truly a hands-on experience…
Visit Mayfair contemporary gallery Sadie Coles HQ for Urs Fischer's recreation of Rodin's The Kiss. Made of white Plasticine and slightly larger than the original, the artist wants the visitor to re-mould his work at will.
Swiss-born Fischer has moved on from his candle sculptures which, once lit, also disintegrated during the course of exhibition. The Kiss will change before your eyes, and the child in us all will enjoy working with this rather welcoming piece of art.
- Sadie Coles HQ, Davies Street, W1: www.sadiecoles.com
Sheer Pleasure at William Morris
We love the title Sheer Pleasure and it's fitting for the works that were owned by Sir Frank Brangwyn (1867-1956). The first artist honoured with a one-man Royal Academy show, he's perhaps better known now as the William Morris Gallery founder.
To celebrate the 150th anniversary of Brangwyn's birth, the museum in Walthamstow is showing his personal and utterly charming collection of Japanese paintings, prints, furniture and ceramics for the very first time. Brangwyn met the Japanese artist Yoshijiro Urushibara in London, which resulted in a series of prints, combining the Western bravado of Brangwyn's designs with the subtle techniques of Japanese printmaking.
On the last Saturday of each month of the exhibition, from 1pm to 4pm, there's a drop-in family day at the gallery where, this month, children aged two and over can learn traditional Japanese calligraphy and origami. There's free entry to the Family Day on February 25.
- Until May: www.wmgallery.org.uk