There is SO much to see and do in London but three of the must-sees are Bailey’s Stardust at the National Portrait Gallery and Matisse’s Cut-Outs and the Richard Hamilton retrospective at The Tate Modern.
Bailey’s Stardust at the National Portrait Gallery
I know I don’t need to tell you who David Bailey is, he’s the Brits answer to Avedon – with a difference. His photographs, as much as anyone, helped visually defined the Swingin’ 60s – especially Britain’s exploding pop culture.
“Irving Penn’s studio is like a cathedral. David Bailey’s studio is like a nightclub.” – Diana Vreeland
He photographed EVERYONE. The Stones. Jack Nicholson. Penelope Tree. David Bowie. Kate Moss. Aboriginals. Damien Hirst. Vivienne Westwood. The Sudan. Man Ray…. and on, and on… The show was curated and by the man himself and it transmits the raw power and energy of his greatest pictures. I still think Avedon is the superior photographer, in a totally different class of his own, but no one can touch the juice and verve of Bailey’s best. They DO feel like they might fly off the gallery walls. It was totally worth seeing – and, if you missed it, the next best thing is to get the book as the show ends June 1, so that’s probably your best bet.