In London? We recommend…

Mary Quant

Where: The V&A Museum, Cromwell Rd, Knightsbridge, London SW7 2RL
When: 6 April 2019 until 16 February 2020
Tickets: £12 (Book tickets here)

Further to the continued success of its Dior exhibition, the V&A is now showcasing another legendary name in fashion; English designer Mary Quant. The exhibition boasts over 200 of Quant’s garments and accessories, exploring her work over the years from 1955 to 1975, as well as some of her most notable achievements and moments. Quant is synonymous with the swinging 60s and revolutionised fashion for the everyday working woman. It is thanks to Quant that items such as the mini skirt and tailored trousers became staples of the English woman’s wardrobe, and as Quant challenged convention she saw the birth of a new age of feminism.

With the Dior exhibition coming to an end in September, and tickets increasingly hard to get your hands on, the Mary Quant exhibition offers an excellent alternative for those looking to explore a fashion legacy.

Sorolla: Spanish Master of Light

Where: The National Gallery, Trafalgar Square, Charing Cross, London WC2N 5DN
When: 18 March until 7 July 2019
Tickets: £18/£16 (Book tickets here)

London’s National Gallery has opened its doors to the exhibition, Sorolla: Spanish Master of Light. This is the first UK exhibition of this Spanish impressionist’s paintings in over a century. Having visited the exhibition, it makes you wonder why the artist’s glorious sun-drenched tableaux are not exhibited more often.

The exhibition showcases 58 of Joaquin Sorolla y Bastida’s works from portraits to landscapes and scenes of Spanish life. His depiction of Spanish life skilfully captures movement and motion. For example in one of the exhibition’s stand-out paintings, ‘Sewing the Sail (Cosiendo la Vela)’, the viewer can feel that the sail could catch the wind and fly out of the painting. The dappled sunlight as the sun’s rays peak through vines is really a testament as to why Sorolla is known as the Spanish master of light.

Sorolla’s childhood and upbringing in Valencia is the setting for many vivid seascapes which highlight Sorolla’s ability to depict the glistening sea water on figures’ skin with such realism, for example in ‘Boys on the Beach’ and ‘Sad Inheritance’, an exceptional painting from the exhibition and Sorolla’s career. ‘Sad Inheritance’ is one of the largest canvases in the exhibition and portrays crippled children bathing in the sea in Valencia. Other highlights of the exhibition include Sorolla’s collection of paintings of some of Andalusia’s most impressive gardens, at the Alhambra, Granada and Real Alcazar in Seville. You can almost hear the fountains trickling and the birds tweeting in these idyllic, sun-dappled gardens.

Considering how rarely Sorolla’s masterpieces are exhibited in the UK, this exhibition is certainly not to be missed! It runs until 7 July 2019.