Ocula Member Galleries are selected by a committee of respected gallerists to present only the best contemporary art on Ocula.Read More
Whether you love established artists like Tracey Emin, Anish Kapoor, or Grayson Perry, or contemporary art created by up-and-coming young artists is more your style, you'll find some of the best art galleries in London to satisfy all your cultural cravings.
Mayfair is home to Sotheby's and Christie's auction houses, the Royal Academy of Arts, and many of London's leading art galleries, such as Gagosian, which represents Cy Twombly and Urs Fischer, and Hauser & Wirth, displaying Eva Hesse, Christina Quarles, and Jenny Holzer. Hidden gems like Sadie Coles HQ (also with galleries at Soho and St James), Simon Lee Gallery, and White Cube are also in this area, recognised for their strong suite of solo exhibitions by some of the world's best emerging and established artists.
In Grosvenor Hill, Almine Rech promotes perceptual and conceptual art and represents James Turrell, John McCracken, and Joseph Kosuth. Not far from Green Park is leading contemporary London art gallery, David Zwirner, which has fostered the careers of many established and influential artists and represents Yayoi Kusama, Luc Tuymans, and Rose Wylie.
Amanda Wilkinson Gallery puts female artists and those focussing on gender at the forefront of its exhibition programme, representing the likes of Laurie Simmons, Joan Jonas, and Julia Dubsky. Bartha Contemporary focuses on non-figurative and conceptual works by established American and European artists such as Clay Ketter and Julia Mangold.
Other member art galleries include Galerie Max Hetzler, which represents Ai Weiwei and Matthew Barney. Dellasposa Gallery, on London's Hyde Park Estate, represents Bridget Riley and David Shrigley and Gazelli Art House, specialising in art from Azerbaijan. Nearby, are Maddox Gallery, LGDR, Karsten Schubert, and HdM Gallery.
Focusing on contemporary South African art, Goodman Gallery represents the likes of William Kentridge and Sam Nhlengethwa. Marian Goodman Gallery represents international artists, including Gabriel Orozco and Danh Vo. Pilar Corrias promotes artist development and their relationships with public institutions and museums, displaying artists like Rachel Rose, Ragna Bley, and Sabine Moritz.
Further galleries in the heart of Mayfair include Pace Gallery, which represents Lee Ufan and Robert Rauschenberg, and Robilant+Voena, representing Andy Warhol and Lucio Fontana. In addition, Offer Waterman represents Lee Miller and Tarka Kings. The district is also home to Rosenfeld, Mazzoleni, Pi Artworks, Richard Saltoun Gallery, and Stern Pissarro Gallery.
Since the 2000s, Sprüth Magers has delivered diverse exhibition programmes, with its roster of artists including the likes of Cindy Sherman, Barbara Kruger, and Stephen Shore. Neighbouring Sprüth Magers is Waddington Custot, representing Bernar Venet and Joan Miró, and Tristan Hoare Gallery, which represents Yves Marchand and Romain Meffre. Also in the vicinity, you will find WORKPLACE, Unit London, MAMOTH, and Vardaxoglou.
From the trendy borough of Hackney to the graffiti-dappled streets of Shoreditch, East London sprawls with creativity. Since the 1970s, the East End has been considered a hotbed for artists and galleries seeking studio and exhibition spaces. With an eclectic mix of commercial galleries, public institutions, and community-led project spaces, East London is an integral part of the wider London art scene.
Founded in 1901, Whitechapel Gallery is a powerhouse for modern and contemporary art, hosting exceptional artists, including Pablo Picasso, Jackson Pollock, Frida Kahlo, Mark Rothko, Sophie Calle, Lucian Freud, and Mark Wallinger. Alongside its exhibition programme, the gallery delivers a huge collection of displays, educational resources, historic archives, artist commissions, and artist talks, providing something free to see year-round.
Chisenhale Gallery champions contemporary art, commissioning and promoting exciting new international and British art. The gallery was initially founded by artists who endeavoured to establish an innovative, dynamic platform for contemporary creatives to experiment and pursue new directions. Artists who have exhibited at Chisenhale include Rachel Jones, Yu Ji, Mandy El-Sayegh, and Lawrence Abu Hamdan.
Considered one of the world's leading contemporary art galleries in London, Victoria Miro represents over 40 artists and estates and exhibits world-class artists such as Yayoi Kusama, Alice Neel, and Chris Ofili. Founded in Mayfair in 1985, Victoria Miro has since expanded to East London and Venice. Victoria Miro frequently participates in prominent art fairs, including Art Basel, Frieze, The Armory Show, and FIAC.
Other notable East London art galleries include Kate MacGarry, which represents Goshka Macuga and Francis Upritchard, and Maureen Paley, representing Gillian Wearing and Liam Gillick. Tabula Rasa Gallery represents Eva Zhang and Yuan Yuan.
East London is also home to First Thursdays, where over 150 galleries come together on the first Thursday of each month to run free exhibitions, book launches, and talks until late at night.
Among the many galleries, you can find a jumble of activities and hip hang-outs throughout the East End. On the weekends, Broadway Market and Columbia Road Flower Market bustle with shoppers looking for handmade crafts, food stalls, and beautiful blooms. Nearby, Clapton provides quieter surroundings with a Sunday market on Chatsworth Road and the charming Castle Cinema, an independent cinema with plush sofa seating.
Across Victoria Park on the east side is Hackney Wick, home to the annual Hackney WickED festival, where artists and venues of the vibrant Hackney Wick and Fish Island communities open their spaces to the public.
Lisson Gallery is one of the cultural gems of North London. Established in 1967 by Nicholas Logsdail, Lisson heralds Minimal and Conceptual artists including Richard Long and Sol LeWitt. Sculptors Tony Cragg, Anish Kapoor, and Richard Deacon also regularly feature in the gallery's programme.
In the heart of North London is Camden Art Centre, a contemporary art gallery housed within a historic library building, that provides an extensive free programme of exhibitions, courses, events, and residencies. Artists including Yinka Shonibare, Martin Creed, and Kara Walker have exhibited here.
In South Kensington, Cadogan Gallery upholds an artist-focused approach, exhibiting artists including Laurence Leenaert, Mimi Jung, and Perla Krauze. Nearby you will find Lehmann Maupin, which represents Do Ho Suh and Billy Childish.
Explore current and upcoming exhibitions across London's best galleries, institutions, and non-profit art spaces.Read More
As an international centre for modern art, street art, and performance art, London is the ideal place to see some of the world's most well-known exhibitions. Boasting a variety of art spaces, including the Royal Academy of Arts, British Museum, Hayward Gallery, Camden Art Centre, Tate Modern, and Serpentine Galleries, as well as other notable art institutions such as the Victoria and Albert Museum, National Portrait Gallery, and Barbican Art Gallery, visitors can explore an array of London exhibitions on display.
London has hosted some of history's most ground-breaking exhibitions, augmenting the city's status as an art capital of the world. The landmark group show Freeze, organised by Damien Hirst in 1988, is widely regarded to have launched the era of the Young British Artists (YBAs) which includes Tracey Emin, Sarah Lucas, Marc Quinn, Gavin Turk, and Liam Gillick, among others.
Internationally renowned artist retrospectives of local and international artists are also regularly presented by London galleries and institutions. In 2017, Tate Britain's David Hockney solo exhibition became the museum's most-visited exhibition. Tate Modern has held retrospectives of Agnes Martin, Anni Albers, Olafur Eliasson, and Louise Bourgeois.
Throughout the year, the city also houses some of the world's most reputable art fairs, attracting thousands of visitors from around the globe. Frieze London, along with Frieze Masters and Frieze Sculpture, have become key events for art calendars worldwide.
London hosts a diverse range of must-see exhibitions on display, featuring abstract art, still images, multi-screen installations, and other artistic disciplines, covering a range of focuses—from the Hispanic world to the Middle East, Europe, and beyond. You can view African photography, Van Gogh paintings, solo exhibitions of Post-Impressionist artists, notable women artists, or a pioneering exhibition featuring queer performers.
View our Gallery Member profiles to discover new paintings, prints, sculptures, and other installations currently showing in London for your own art history research, or to build your collection.
Explore current and upcoming exhibitions across London's best galleries, institutions, and non-profit art spaces.
London is home to one of the world's most dynamic and vibrant arts scenes. Browse our extended selection of galleries to visit around the city, as recommended by the team at Ocula.
London's museums and institutions offer a world-class arts and culture experience. Explore our selection of the best spaces to visit.Read More
In the heart of Millbank is the internationally renowned Tate Britain, which houses an unrivalled collection of British art from the 16th century to today. Tate Britain also organises the prestigious annual Turner Prize, first awarded in 1984, which recognises leading British visual artists.
A short walk from the Millennium Bridge is Tate Modern, which opened in 2000 to showcase the U.K.'s national collection of international modern and contemporary art. Tate Modern's iconic Turbine Hall has staged some of the most ambitious, large-scale installation works of the 21st century.
Other highlights include the Serpentine Galleries, with two locations just five minutes apart across Kensington Gardens. A leader in contemporary practice since 1970, the Serpentine supports emerging artists and creative practitioners through their free, year-round programme of exhibitions and events.
Further institutions, including the Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA) and Whitechapel Gallery, continue to provide a platform for pioneering contemporary artists, filmmakers, and cultural producers, with a global outlook.
Ocula Magazine is an online platform dedicated to publishing the best in contemporary art internationally. Explore our in-depth conversations, insights, features, news stories, and photologs covering the London arts scene here.Read More
In any given week, you can see the works of some of the world's most exciting artists in London. Here you will find a selection of artists whose works are currently on show in the city.Read More
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London has propelled the careers of U.K. and international artists, with its renowned galleries and museums providing a global stage for seminal exhibitions. Artists who have recently held major solo exhibitions in the city include Philip Guston, Sarah Lucas, Anselm Kiefer, Mike Nelson, and Chris Killip.
It was in London where the careers of the Young British Artists were launched. Known as the YBAs, this term is loosely applied to the collective of artists who began exhibiting together in the late 1980s. Adopting alternative attitudes to material and process, the young talents quickly gained attention for their provocative exhibitions. Notable YBAs include Damien Hirst, Tracey Emin, Cornelia Parker, Sarah Lucas, Michael Landy, and Gary Hume.
London is an internationally-renowned destination for lovers of modern and contemporary art, with a vibrant, diverse scene that is home to countless galleries, institutions, and non-profit spaces.Read More
Throughout the year, some of the world's largest art events take place in the city, with the annual fair Frieze London arguably the city's most anticipated commercial art event.
Featuring curated sections, talks, and events from more than 160 of the world's most outstanding contemporary galleries, the week-long fair transforms The Regent's Park each October. It is Frieze's prized flagship fair, with further editions since launched in New York, Los Angeles, and Seoul.
Also taking place each autumn is the 1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair, the only international art fair dedicated to contemporary art from Africa and the African diaspora. Hosted at Somerset House, 1-54 has included a series of special projects, a forum, and a talks programme.
But, of course, London is more than a just pit stop for mega-collectors and star curators: the city is home to countless artist-run initiatives and non-profits that have long formed the beating heart of the London arts ecology.
In South London, 198 Contemporary Arts & Learning promotes under-represented artists, curators, and communities, providing a platform for arts education and creative enterprise for over 30 years. In Croydon is Turf Projects, the borough's first artist-run contemporary art space that shares a similarly communal ethos that drives its dynamic programme of exhibitions and events.
The itinerant b.Dewitt Gallery—a dedicated gateway to the international art scene for U.K.-based artists—combines the responsiveness of an artist-run initiative with the ambition of a brick-and-mortar gallery. In Islington, the artist-run cooperative Cubitt operates a critical, peer-led exhibition and education programme; while in Camberwell, the South London Gallery presents exhibitions, films, and live events with an emphasis on promoting new work by British and international artists.
In East London, Chisenhale Gallery has made its name over the years as a bellwether of contemporary art, commissioning new works by the likes of Rosalind Nashashibi, Ed Atkins, Amalia Pica, Park McArthur, and Hannah Black, in the formative stages of their careers.
Similarly, Gasworks in Vauxhall is known for its exhibitions, public events, and acclaimed residency and studio programmes. Across the River Thames in Bethnal Green is Auto Italia, an artist-run project space that focuses on commissioning new works by emerging artists.
In Waterlow Park, the non-profit U.K. agency LUX showcases and supports artists working in moving image. Nearby, you will find the Highgate Cemetery, where notable figures including Karl Marx, George Eliot, and Malcolm McLaren are buried.
New arts organisations continue to pop up around London, offering innovative, experimental, and collaborative models for exhibition-making. Established in 2018 is V.O Curations, a space devoted to supporting emerging and under-represented artists, which today spans three locations in Mayfair, Angel, and Tower of London. In South Kensington is Cromwell Place, a membership organisation offering a thriving, first-of-its-kind exhibition and studio hub for member galleries.
For those in London from January through February, the international gallery exchange Condo brings together some of the world's most talked about artists, with London host galleries sharing their spaces with visiting galleries. Founded in 2016 by Vanessa Carlos of Carlos/Ishikawa, whose roster of artists includes Oscar Murillo and Korakrit Arunanondchai, Condo has expanded to include Mexico City, New York, Shanghai, Athens, and São Paolo. Its list of participants reads like a veritable roll call of London's foremost small- to mid-scale commercial galleries: Phillida Reid, Arcadia Missa, Rodeo, and Pilar Corrias (all in West London); Project Native Informant, Hollybush Gardens, Kate MacGarry, Emalin, Union Pacific, Modern Art, The Approach, and Maureen Paley (East London); and greengrassi and The Sunday Painter (South London).
The annual Serpentine Pavilion commission is one of London's trademark art events, for which the gallery invites renowned architects to design temporary structures in Hyde Park. With collaborators including Herzog & de Meuron, Zaha Hadid, Rem Koolhaas, and SANAA, it is no surprise that the pavilion attracts significant international attention.
London's larger galleries and museums exert their own force with a revolving programme that promotes artists ranging from early career to blue-chip. Head to The Photographers' Gallery to see the best in lens-based art, the Royal Academy for crowd-pleasing exhibitions and an annual summer show, or the Barbican to experience one of London's great architectural marvels.
Give yourself several hours to explore the ambitious exhibitions on show year-round at the Southbank Centre's Hayward Gallery, and take your time to see what's on offer at the Institute of Contemporary Art, London's home of cutting-edge film programming.
A visit to London would be incomplete without a trip to Tate Britain or Tate Modern. For smaller but no less stimulating exhibitions, visit Camden Art Centre, Serpentine Gallery, Whitechapel Gallery, or Goldsmiths Centre for Contemporary Art (designed by Turner Prize-winning architects, Assemble). Finish with a trip to the historic Victoria and Albert Museum—home of epoch-making blockbusters such as Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty and David Bowie is.