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Maps and the 20th Century: Drawing the Line
British Library, 4th November to 1st March 2017
The emblem of the United Nations depicts a map of the world held in two olive branches symbolising peace. It may sound uncontroversial, but the first version centred on the United States and cut off part of Argentina; it had to be revised. As this exhibition will demonstrate, maps are political dynamite.
Maps became potent tools in the 20th century, which saw the movement of people and the frequent toppling and creation of new states. It was also during this century, curator Tom Harper suggests, that their use became commonplace, rather than the preserve of landowners, scholars and the military. The British Library has drawn together over 150 maps and related objects, from the first one of AA Milne’s Hundred Acre Wood to a trench-map of the Somme battlefields.
Victor Pasmore, Towards a New Reality
Djanogly Gallery, Nottingham, 26th November to 19th February 2017
In the late 1940s, Victor Pasmore, then on the cusp of 40 and an accomplished figurative painter, switched tack entirely to work in an abstract idiom, leading eventually to the striking collages and reliefs that would make him famous. This show focuses on works from the critical years, between the late 1930s and early 1960s, seeking to trace what critic Herbert Read dubbed “the most revolutionary event in post-war British art.”
Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art, 18th November to 26th February 2017
This artist’s installations examine the relationship between architecture, sex and power. Bonvicini was part of the Italian Pavilion that won the Golden Lion at the 1999 Venice Biennale. Her sculpture for London’s Olympic Park consists of nine-metre high, mirrored letters spelling RUN. The Baltic’s survey includes work from throughout her career and specially commissioned new works, in an environment given the unsettling Bonvicini makeover.