Unmissable Art Exhibitions in London, June 2018

29 May 2018|By Philippa Baker

This month's diverse selection of exhibitions spans fashion, music, graphic design and the First World War 

Orla Kiely: A Life in Pattern, Fashion and Textile Museum

Uncover the versatility of Irish designer Orla Kiely at the Bermondsey’s Fashion and Textile Museum. Featuring geometric patterns, prototypes of early her signature bag, paper sketches and the evolution of the ‘Pear’ and ‘Flower’ designs alongside Kiely’s collaborations with photographers, film directors and architects, the exhibition provides an insight into the inspiration and methodology behind Kiely’s iconic designs. The exhibition is a colorful display of the designer’s stylized graphic innovations.

£9.90 Adult, until 23 September 2018, Bermondsey Street, SE1 3XF, ftmlondon.org

Hope to Nope: Graphics and Politics 2008 – 18, Design Museum

With over 160 objects and installations, discover the influence of graphic design and technology in dictating political moments within the last decade. Spanning internet memes, posters and protest placards, the exhibition displays how graphic messages challenge, alter and influence topical issues like Brexit, ISIS and Donald Trump. In partnership with social listening platform, Pulsar, witness real-time social media conversations through dynamic displays.

£12 Adult, Until 12 August 2018, Kensington High Street, W8 6AG, designmuseum.org

Aftermath: Art in the Wake of World War One, Tate Britain

This notable exhibition marks the centenary of the First World War. It explores how artists used art to document the destructive ramifications of the war and reflect on the aftermath left in its wake. The collection presents prominent artists like Picasso alongside lesser-known artists such as Winifred Knight, C. R. W. Nevison and Otto Dix in their engagement with the war.

£18 Adult, 5 June – 20 September 2018, Millbank, SW1P 4RG, tate.org.uk

Dorothea Lange/Vanessa Winship, Barbican

Immerse yourself this month in a documentary photographic exhibition, which celebrates the work of contemporary British photographer Vanessa Winship and American photojournalist Dorothea Lange (1895 – 1965). Delve into Lange’s early studio portraiture through Dorothea Lange: Politics of Seeing, which captures the evolving social and political American landscape during the Great Depression of the 1930s. Vanessa Winship’s collection And Time Folds brings together more than 150 intimate photographs in her first major UK exhibition in a public gallery is exhibited alongside Lange’s work. The dual exhibit os part of The Art of Change season, which highlights artist’s reflections and response to social and political landscapes.

£13.50 non-member, 22 June – 2 September 2018, Silk Street, EC2Y, barbican.org.uk

Poster Girls: A Century of Art and Design, London Transport Museum

Poster Girls showcases more than 150 original posters and artworks produced by notable female graphic artists like Mabel Lucie Attwell, Dora Batty, Laura Knight and Zandra Rhodes for Transport for London. Incorporating designs from the 20th and 21st century the collection exhibits a variety of styles alongside letters, books, ceramics and photographs providing an insight into the women’s lives and the period that they worked.

£16 – £17 Adult, Until January 2019, Covent Garden Piazza, WC2E 7BB, ltmuseum.co.uk


The photographic series by German photographer, Kai Schäfer, celebrates music history by photographing iconic music albums on turntables. The project started in 2010 when Schäfer developed a lighting system that illuminated the records in a new and exposing way. Following a successful tour in New York and Los Angeles, WORLDRECORDS is exhibiting at HENI Gallery throughout June. The visually striking homage to music will feature David Bowie’s The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and Spiders from Mars, alongside The Clash’s London Calling.

1 June – 1 July, 6 – 10 Lexington Street, W1F 0LB, henipublishing.com

Michael Jackson: On the Wall, National Portrait Gallery

Known for his theatrical performances and iconic songs, the cultural influence of Michael Jackson is captured in a vibrant multimedia exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery. Coinciding with the singer’s 60th birthday, Michael Jackson: On the Wall brings together an array of styles and media by prominent artists like Andy Warhol, Glenn Ligon and Isa Genzken. Featuring new work, whilst drawing on the public and private collections of over 40 global artists, the exhibition presents Michael Jackson’s legacy as a cultural icon.

£15.50 – £20 Adult, 28 June – 21 October 2018, St. Martin’s Place, WC2H 0HE, npg.org.uk

Art Night, various locations

This exhibition is in July, not June, but we’re putting it on your radar now so you can get ready for London’s only all-night arts and performance festival. Spanning from early evening until dawn, the event promises a diverse programme of contemporary art, performance, music and architecture centering on the theme of home, gardening and urban produce. Beginning at Southbank Centre and running along the Thames to Battersea Power Station, Art Night Guides will lead visitors along the trail which includes cultural landmarks like Hayward Gallery and the Garden Museum. Many of the projects are site-specific and directly engage with the culture and heritage of the surrounding area.

7 July 2018, 6pm – 6am, artnight.london