Opening this month - Museums Association

Opening this month

Volcanic activity as seen through artists' eyes, World Cup fever and a surrealist birthday party: Geraldine Kendall takes her pick of July's new exhibitions
Steve McCurry Retrospective, Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery, Birmingham

Until 17 October

Photojournalist Steve McCurry is most widely known for Afghan Girl, his portrait of a young refugee. Birmingham’s major retrospective features that iconic image, along with more than 80 other photographs spanning his 20-year career.

The world-renowned photographer has covered many international and civil conflicts and is famous for his dynamic street portraits and evocative use of colour. McCurry will host a talk at the gallery on 2 July.

Cost £17,000
Funder Birmingham City Council
Curator Tom Grosvenor
Exhibition design and graphics in-house

World Cup London 2010, PM Gallery & House, London

2-18 July

Even those most resistant to football will have noticed by now that the world’s biggest sporting event is taking place. Timed to coincide with the final stages of the World Cup, this exhibition will record the tournament’s impact on the population of London, documenting moments of ecstasy, despair and passion among the city’s diverse communities.

A team of photographers will take to the streets to capture all the drama, from a Swiss church in Covent Garden to the borough of Brent, temporarily transformed into a mini-Brazil.

Cost undisclosed
Funder in-house
Curators Philip Bigg, Carol Swords

Double Vision: Contemporary Art from Papua New Guinea, Gateway Galleries, University of St Andrews

3 July-14 August

A rare opportunity to see work by contemporary artists from Papua New Guinea on display in Scotland. The exhibition features paintings by the major artist Mathias Kauage and a range of textiles based on the traditional “bilum” woven-bag technique. It runs alongside the university’s hosting of the European Society for Oceanists Conference and will be accompanied by a series of public talks on Papua New Guinean art.

Cost £5,000
Main funders Fife Council, Scottish Arts Council, European Society for Oceanists’ Conference
Origination Fife Contemporary Art & Craft (FCA&C) in collaboration with the Rebecca Hossack Art Gallery, London
Curators Diana Sykes, FCA&C; Pamela Rosi and Michael Mel
Exhibition design and graphics Susan Davis, FCA&C

Humphrey Spender (1910-2005): A Centenary Celebration, Gainsborough’s House, Sudbury, Suffolk

3 July-25 September

This exhibition to mark the centenary of Humphrey Spender’s birth spans his long and varied career. Best known as a pioneer of 1930s Mass-Observation photography, which sought to capture scenes from everyday British life, Spender’s talents went far beyond the camera.

He was also a painter, architect, illustrator and designer whose work extended from wallpaper and textile patterns to interior design for ocean liners. The display will include some of his innovative experiments with photographic techniques as well as his quirky “dotty” objects.

Cost undisclosed
Funder in-house
Curator Diane Perkins
Exhibition design and graphics in-house

Another World: Dalí, Magritte, Miró and the Surrealists, Dean Gallery, Edinburgh

10 July-9 January 2011

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, this major exhibition brings together masterpieces of surrealist painting and sculpture, along with prints, publications and archival material.

The gallery itself will be transformed into a strange landscape, with the paintings hung densely on coloured walls amid cases of the gallery’s antique manuscripts. Highlights include Dalí’s 1951 Raphaelesque Head Exploding and rarely seen print portfolios by artists such as Max Ernst and Yves Tanguy.

Funder undisclosed
Curator Patrick Elliott
Exhibition design and graphics Patrick Elliott

Hitched: Wedding Clothes and Customs, Sudley House, Liverpool

23 July-spring 2011

An exhibition of wedding paraphernalia revealing the changing face of marriage over the past 150 years, from a 19th-century white silk taffeta wedding dress to the matching suits of a 21st-century civil partnership. The exhibition also takes a closer look at dress codes and customs of different cultural groups.

Notable exhibits include a Chinese beaded wedding dress of red satin, and a dramatic, crystal-sequinned gown worn by a bride from Liverpool’s Traveller community. Alongside are photographs and ephemera revealing the varied traditions and superstitions of matrimony, from food and transport to the evolution of stag and hen parties.

Cost £15,000
Funder National Museums Liverpool
Curator Pauline Rushton
Exhibition design and graphics National Museums Liverpool

Volcano: From Turner to Warhol, Compton Verney, Warwickshire

24 July-31 October

Compton Verney organised this exhibition long before Eyjafjallajökull’s ash cloud erupted into the public consciousness. But because of the Icelandic volcano’s recent activity, the show seems a particularly timely exploration of works inspired by volcanoes over the past 500 years.

Through paintings, eyewitness drawings, film and diaries, the exhibition will demonstrate the long-held human fascination for the beauty and power of these natural phenomena. Highlights include side-by-side depictions of Vesuvius by Warhol, Turner and Joseph Wright, and Hiroshige’s elegant prints of a snow-covered Mount Fiji.

Cost undisclosed
Main funder in-house
Curator James Hamilton
Exhibition design OS-B, London

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