Mayfair Art Weekend: Mayfair & St James’s throws open its doors for a free weekend of art & events to celebrate 250 years of creativity

Mayfair & St James’s throw open their doors for a free weekend of art & events to celebrate 250 years of creativity across a world-leading cultural district: Mayfair Art Weekend.

Mayfair Art Weekend in partnership with the Royal Academy of Arts, will present an extensive programme of exhibitions, events, talks and tours across Mayfair & St James’s. Mayfair Art Weekend celebrates the diverse offering of this historic cultural district, internationally renowned as a vibrant hub of creativity and craftsmanship, where the worlds of art, fashion and luxury converge.

Over 40 galleries, including David Zwirner, Gagosian, Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac and Hauser + Wirth, will participate in this year’s Mayfair Art Weekend. New galleries for 2018 include Cardi Gallery, Christie’s, kamel mennour, Mall Galleries, Mimosa House, Olivier Malingue, Peter Harrington Rare Books, Richard Saltoun and Senesi Contemporanea.

The Gallery HOP! will launch the weekend with 24 galleries hosting special evening viewings and events from 6-8pm on Friday 29 June with drinks sponsor Sipsmith Gin. Levy Gorvy gallery have invited London based DJ Cedric Bardawil to perform for their Gallery HOP! event, where he will play music in response to their exhibition featuring the works of artists Yves Klein and James Turrell.

Exhibitions on view over the weekend include works by internationally acclaimed artists such as Richard Prince at Skarstedt Gallery – showing early ‘Joke Paintings’ previously unseen in the UK; Howard Hodgkin at Gagosian – an exhibition of the artist’s last paintings ; Christo & Jeanne-Claude at Stern Pissarro Gallery – presenting preparatory works for some of their most important and iconic public works.

This year’s programme has a strong showing of British artists, with over a third of the exhibitions on view including British names, which range from street artist Ben Eine to Victorian artist Sir Walter Sickert. Many participating galleries will shine a spotlight on female artists, with American installation artist Carol Bove at David Zwirner, contemporary video artist Tejal Shah at Mimosa House, and groups shows such as Land of Lads, Land of Lashes at Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac – showcasing sculptural works by three outstanding
pioneers of Minimal and Post-Minimal Art – and Hypnagogia at Pippy Houldsworth Gallery – an exhibition of female artists whose paintings offer a distilled interpretation of reality. Creative partner, Max Mara will host a talk on Saturday 30 June, 11am, with Whitechapel Gallery director, Iwona Blazwick on the importance of supporting female artists and the history of the Max Mara Art Prize for Women.

Within the Royal Academy, UAL student curators – using the RA’s Collection as a starting point – will takeover the RA’s newly relaunched Burlington Gardens spaces to programme D i s s e c t i o n s -– a student-led festival of art, film, music and performance on view from 30 June – 1 July.

The RA’s Annenberg Courtyard will serve as a central hub across the weekend providing visitors with a place to eat, drink and relax while engaging in a free arts festival, including artists talks, creative workshops and artist-led tours of participating galleries. There will be a mouth-watering selection of food, including decadent vegan street food by FFS! Feral Food Stall. To quench the thirst, there will be a fantastic selection of craft beers from Deviant Dandy and a variety of cocktails and cold draught lagers by Midsummer Nightcap . Fortnum and Mason will also be on-site offering an ice-cream cart.

On Sunday afternoon Burlington Gardens will be temporarily pedestrianised to accommodate The Long Artists’ Lunch – an afternoon of delicious food, art and lively conversation. Hosted by British artist, and Royal Academician, Bob and Roberta Smith, the lunch will be served on a 15 metre long surrealist art themed tablescape designed by artist duo Philip and Charlotte Colbert. Visitors can sit on lobster chairs and amongst eccentric table settings for an afternoon of artist-led discussions, performances and interventions. Guests can drop in, bring or buy a delicious meal from an Italian tapas stall by Company of Cooks, and join in artist led discussions.

Bob & Roberta Smith RA, said:

Art is manifestly convivial. Artists spend long hours alone, or at least they used to. There is a reason artists like a lunch, it’s a chance to meet people, have fun, but importantly it’s a chance to talk about ideas publicly. It’s a chance to overhear others ideas and a chance to be seen to ‘be’ an artist. So join us, learn how to eat like an artist. What will you wear? What will you say? What intellectual condiments will you sprinkle over your rhetoric? Be an artist at the Long Artists’ Lunch!

In addition, there will be over 22 participating venues programming special events across the weekend within the galleries and auctions and fashion houses, ranging from bookbinding workshops, pop-up bookstores and artist led tours. Visitors can join art market specialists and journalists Georgina Adam and Stephanie Dieckvoss for a discussion on Is Faking on the Rise ; a talk with photographer Angela Williams looking back at her career in the studio of celebrity photographer Norman Parkinson; an exhibition tour of Carol Bove’s show at David Zwirner with director James Green and JJ Charlesworth, Senior Editor, ArtReview; or a print workshop with the artist Dan Baldwin at Maddox Gallery.

Tim Marlow, Artistic Director, Royal Academy of Arts, said:

We are delighted to be partnering with the Mayfair Art Weekend once again. It’s a very special part of London, with an illustrious past, an energetic present and a fascinating (and I’m sure glorious) cultural future. We have an amazing line-up for this year, including the RA’s festival providing a platform for young artists and some wonderful collaborations across London’s West End that collectively celebrate a quarter of millennia of art, demonstrating the rich traditions of visual arts in Mayfair and St James’s. What better way to showcase the artistic vitality of the area and our commitment to championing the arts of tomorrow than at this exciting moment in our own history, welcoming local and international visitors alike.

Mayfair Art Weekend 29 June – 1 July 2018 Mayfair and St. James’s (Various locations) mayfairartweekend.com
#MAW2018

About Mark Westall

Mark Westall is the Founder and Editor of FAD magazine, ' A curation of the world’s most interesting culture' [PLUS] Art of Conversation: A tri-annual 'no news paper' AofC - Issue 1 Sept/Oct