Exhibition of the week
Marina Abramović: Gates and Portals
An Abramović event without the renowned performance artist, who is replaced by volunteers trained in her “Method.”
• Modern Art Oxford, 24 September-5 March
Dark Waters: JMW Turner with Lamin Fonfana
Does the great and radical Romantic painter need a soundtrack? Tate Liverpool reckons so.
• Tate Liverpool, from 27 September
Horses and Freud
A celebration of Lucian Freud’s passion for the turf, including relics of his gambling.
• Ordovas, London, 27 September-16 December
Image of the week
Francis Bacon, known for his brutally visceral paintings of screaming popes and writhing figures, also worked in London as an interior designer. Rare surviving objects from the time – including his rugs, lesser-spotted paintings and this plate/palette – are now up for auction. Read the full article.
What we learned
Masterpiece of the week
Dhratarastra, Guardian-King of the North, from Joseon-dynasty Korea, 1796-1820
This painting on linen is a fantastically powerful, almost florid vision of a fierce being flamboyantly dressed in red and black, warning off any intruders to a Buddhist temple. You can see how, in earlier centuries, Korea’s art creatively mixed with Buddhist styles from its neighbours China and Japan. Yet the tough Guardian-King is playing a lute, its gentle harmonies suggesting his softer side. Korea’s traditional art is supremely spiritual and civilised, expressing Buddhist values in symmetrical, ethereal ceramics and gilded manuscripts as well as this characterful image.
• The British Museum, London
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