We can hardly believe that this year is coming to a close already. That came around quickly, didn’t it? As we start the run up to our busiest time of year, we thought it might be fun to take a look back on 2015. To celebrate the availability of our Artists Gift Set at the Tate Modern gift shop this season, we thought we’d remind ourselves of some of the most memorable moments in art this year.
Image credit: bettyx1138
Back in August, Banksy announced the opening of his “bemusement park” Dismaland. Right up until its announcement, Dismaland was a total secret, with only a handful of local authority staff being aware of its existence.
Dismaland featured various mocking takes on the standard “adventure park” including instalments like the dead princess surrounded by a mob of paparazzi and a warped little mermaid. Not only did Dismaland make a point - we’ll let you decide what point that was - it also brought 150,000 paying customers to it’s location in Weston-super-Mare and made a tidy £20m.
In true Banksy style, all fixtures from Dismaland were packed up and shipped off to Calais refugee camps to build shelters.
Savage Beauty: Alexander McQueen
Image credit: Louise McLaren
Alexander McQueen was one of the most innovative designers of our time, and Savage Beauty was the first look back at his work in the UK. Clearly, it wasn’t a moment too soon, as the exhibition literally broke records at the V&A. By the time its 21 weeks were up, Savage Beauty had attracted 493,043 visitors and for the first time in history, the museum stayed open overnight to accommodate for the unprecedented demand.
Chattyfeet hit the shelves at Tate Modern
We couldn’t very well talk about art in 2015 without touchin on our own big news, now, could we? Our artists gift set - the perfect Christmas present for the budding artist in your life - will be available at the Tate Modern gift shop just in time for the season to be jolly! Be sure to pay it a visit.
Charles Pétillon’s Heartbeat Installation
Image credit: Neel Mistry
Heartbeats was Charles Pétillon’s first ever piece of live work outside of France, his home country. It involved filling Covent Garden’s Market Building with 100,000 (yes, you read that correctly) white balloons between August and September. The installation is designed to resemble a giant but fragile cloud floating above the busy market below. It certainly went down well with visitors, perhaps due to the fact that it was ever so Instagrammable.. Many said it brought with it an element of calm that’s much missed now that it’s been taken down!
Ai Weiwei at the Royal Academy of Art
Ai Weiwei first made a storm in the UK during his sunflower seeds installation at Tate Modern back in 2010, but this year the Royal Academy of Arts is bringing together his most important works from the last few decades for the general British public to enjoy.
Weiwei’s work examines censorship, human rights and contemporary Chinese art and society - rather fitting for the intensity of the Royal Academy of Arts’ historic spaces.
The exhibition has already drawn a huge number of visitors, and has even has a few overnight viewings to keep up with demand. It’s open until 13th December, so if you’re interested in checking it out, make sure you book in advance!
There we have it, the things that really caught our eye in the art world this year. We want to hear what your top art moments of 2015 were! Let us know on Twitter or Facebook - and don’t forget to follow us on Instagram, too.