This weekend, check out the Matisse retrospective in New York, enjoy a selection of Britain’s best artists at London’s ICA and snap up a one-off festive musical treat.
EXHIBITION: NEW YORK
—Matisse: In Search of True Painting
This month marks the opening of Matisse: In Search of True Painting at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Exploring in great detail the process by which the painter crafted his works, the exhibition presents 49 of the French artist’s must-see impressionism masterpieces. While the works are well worth seeing in their own right, the overarching theme of the exhibit follows the notion that for Matisse, the process by which he worked was as important as the finished product.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1,000 Fifth Avenue. Open Tuesday to Thursday and Sunday 9.30–17.30; Friday and Saturday 9.30–21.00. Closed on Mondays until 17 March.
—Fashion Art Object shop
Online concept store Fashion Art Object has opened a festive pop-up shop for the holiday season – the perfect stop for all last-minute Christmas shopping. Set in the midst of the lively Marylebone High Street area, the venue offers a nice selection of homeware, furniture and fashion accessories such as jewellery pieces by young Dutch designer Danielle Vroemen, Jill Shaddock’s ceramic coffee sets and Another Country’s benches.
22 New Cavendish Street, W1G 8TT. Open Monday to Saturday 10.00–18.00, Thursday 10.00–20.00. Until 29 December.
FILM: USA and UK
—Amour, directed by Michael Haneke
Amour, the film that brought director Michael Haneke's second Palme d'Or for best picture at the Cannes Film Festival, finally arrives on US and UK screens. Starring 85-year-old French actress Emmanuelle Riva, best known for her role in Alain Resnais’s Hiroshima Mon Amour (1959), the French/German/Austrian production was also named best picture at the Los Angeles Film Critics Association awards and is the Austrian entry for the Best Foreign Language Oscar at the 85th Academy Awards next year.
Amour is screening at various locations across the UK and US.
—Fourth Plinth: Contemporary Monument
In London this weekend the Fourth Plinth: Contemporary Monument exhibition brings together 21 maquettes by renowned artists such as Anish Kapoor, Marc Quinn, Sarah Lucas and Tracey Emin. The maquettes on display are of works that have been adorning the plinth on the northwest corner of Trafalgar square at different times between 1999 and today. Commissioned and sponsored by London’s Institute for Contemporary Art in partnership with mayor Boris Johnson, the show is at the ICA until 20 January.
Institute of Contemporary Arts, The Mall. Open Tuesday to Sunday 11.00–23.00. Until 20 January.
The Voluntary Butler Scheme, Quinzhee (Building Us A House Out Of Snow)
Like a Christmas gift emerging from the blizzard of novelty music releases at this time of year, the eccentrically named The Voluntary Butler Scheme (the musical output of UK musician Rob Jones), has produced a small wonder in this pleasantly Christmassy lullaby released this week. Balancing originality with sentimentality on Christmas songs is a fine art – many fall victim to stereotypical cliché (or just being a bit rubbish) – but Quinzhee (Building Us A House Out Of Snow) manages to build a sense of nostalgic magic while also creating something new. Somehow, it doesn’t actually mention Christmas, either. See? Magic.
"Quinzhee (Building Us A House Out Of Snow)" is available to buy now. soundcloud.com/thevoluntarybutlerscheme