As the toffee apples stock up and the calamitous noise of fireworks fill the sky, the start of November welcomes in a brand new season of festivity and celebration. However, smoking bonfires and screeching rockets aren’t the only means of celebrating this weekend with a whole host of sizzling exhibitions on offer, ready to set your Saturday and Sunday off with a bang. Revel in some of the best art shows from around the world as we count through our top five picks.
1. Adrián Villar Rojas: Today We Reboot the Planet, Serpentine, London.
The new Serpentine Sackler Gallery goes pre-historic as Argentinian artist Adrián Villar Rojas conjures up a fossilised world of ruins and ancient monuments in this mammoth site-specific installation. From a mummified Kurt Cobain to a 28 metre-long sculpture of a whale stranded in a forest, expect an explosive collision of the historic and futuristic in a place where popular culture and science fiction smash into a dusty world of brick, clay and mud. A comment on the fragility of the world’s ecology, get lost in the myths and majesty of this imaginative new exhibition.
2. David Hockney: Early Reflections, Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool.
The early work of one of the most influential artists of the 20th century, David Hockney, comes into startling focus in this new and unique exhibition of his prints and paintings at the Walker. Encompassing works from his time at the Royal College of Art, injected with all the cornucopia of the swinging Sixties, through to his markedly different style of the Seventies, this show traces Hockney’s recurring references to homosexuality, his persistent return to portraiture and a preoccupation with the reflective qualities of water. Including iconic pieces, such as Peter Getting out of Nick’s Pool, this new show plunges you head first into a young Hockney’s prodigious talent to fascinating effect.
3. Philip-Lorca diCorcia East of Eden, David Zwirner, London.
From the Book of Genesis to Bush-era American politics, Philip- Lorca diCorcia creates a provocative series of large-scale photographs, obsessed with disillusionment and the sense of a “fall” in this new exhibition, East of Eden. Toying with documentary and theatrically staged photography, diCorcia plays with classic struggles of good and evil through uncanny and deceptively complex compositions. Straddling the line between fact and fiction, hard economics and imaginative narrative, this new show presents a roller coaster ride for the weekend, offering a world that simultaneously reaches beyond the everyday and also acknowledges uncomfortable reality.
4. KAWS Pass the Blame, Galerie Perrotin, New York.
Bouncing off from the likes of Warhol and Lichtenstein, this new exhibition of KAWS presents a whimsical world of abstraction and pop, certain to brighten up the weekend with “KAPOW” and colour. Cartoon silhouettes fractured, shaken up and re-imagined meet the stripped back white cube of the Galerie Perrotin as KAWS creates a high energy environment, charged with all the frenzy of contemporary culture. Embrace the heady days of growing up as Pass the Blame takes you back to a childish, mischievous psyche, bringing to life youthful memories of a Technicolour cartoon-comic world .
5. The Tyranny of Objects, Galeries de Galeries, Paris.
The objects and “things” that surround day-to-day life become layered with significance, trouble and character in this exhibition curated by Alexandra Fau. Here meek, adaptable appliances set out a vendetta against the running of everyday lives and indomitable objects appear to rise up in a rebellion against comforts, tastes and behaviours. Imbued with intelligence and even speech, The Tyranny of Objects dips into the fields of philosophy, architecture and animation to light-heartedly explore the cheeky, but sometimes dictatorial, materialism of the object world.
1. Man in Shower in Beverly Hills, 1964 © David Hockney. Photo © Tate, London 2013.