A list of free exhibitions in London open now, and opening in London soon.

Displayed by how soon they close.

Exhibitions open now

The annual international open exhibition of the UK Coloured Pencil Society is this year celebrating 20 years of promoting fine art in coloured pencil.
Open from Thu 14th Oct to Sun 24th Oct
Ends this month

2021-10-14
UK Coloured Pencil Society 20th Anniversary Gala Exhibition
Celebrating south London’s music scene, Music Curator Adem Holness highlights the relationship between Black British music and physical space.
Open from Fri 23rd Jul to Sun 24th Oct
Ends this month

Horniman Museum
SE23 3PQ
2021-07-23
 Dance Can’t Nice: Exploring London’s Black music spaces
An exhibition to celebrate the release of A Field Guide to Larking by Lara Maiklem, author of the bestselling Mudlarking: Lost and Found on the River Thames
Open from Thu 1st Jan 1970 to Sat 30th Oct
Ends this month

Southwark Cathedral
SE1 9DA
Larking: The Thames and Beyond
Discover the life and works of John Keats - Londoner, medic and poet - on the bicentenary of his death in 1821.
Open from Mon 4th Oct to Sun 31st Oct
Ends this month

Aldgate Square
EC3N 1AF
2021-10-04
Keats200 - Outdoor Exhibition
As dusk falls, the park will come to life with ghoulish greenery, giant spiders and the odd surprise to delight children and adults of all ages.
Open from Fri 22nd Oct to Sun 31st Oct
Ends this month

Jubilee Park
E14 5AB
2021-10-22
 Smoke & Spiders
Five monumental views reunited for the first time in more than 250 years.
Open from Thu 22nd Jul to Sun 31st Oct
Ends this month

National Gallery
WC2N 5DN
2021-07-22
Bellotto: The Königstein Views Reunited
A display of Asante treasures from Ghana, shedding light on 19th-century collecting and the British Empire.
Open from Wed 19th May to Sun 31st Oct
Ends this month

Victoria and Albert Museum
SW7 2RL
2021-05-19
Asante Goldweights
Discover the shared military heritage between the UK and the Caribbean in this special exhibition exploring the role of West Indian soldiers in the British Army.
Open from Wed 19th May to Sun 31st Oct
Ends this month

National Army Museum
SW3 4HT
2021-05-19
West Indian Soldier
An exhibition on perhaps the Isokon’s most renowned resident: Agatha Christie.
Open from Sat 2nd Oct to Sun 31st Oct
Ends this month

Isokon Gallery
NW3 2XD
2021-10-02
Agatha Christie
An exhibition of works by Zsolt Bodoni, a prominent Hungarian visual artist and painter who primarily works with oil and acrylic on canvas.
Open from Fri 8th Oct to Wed 3rd Nov

David Kovats Gallery
WC2E 9NG
2021-10-08
Zsolt Bodoni – Hybrids
A display of photographs of London from eight different perspectives, rejecting a single, monolithic view in favour of a fragmentary, multifarious mosaic.
Open from Fri 17th Sep to Thu 4th Nov

The Building Centre
WC1E 7BT
2021-09-17
Londons – The Polycentric City
A new photographic art display exploring contemporary relationships with spiritualism, reality and surrealism, through a Black British lens.
Open from Mon 20th Sep to Sun 7th Nov

Horniman Museum
SE23 3PQ
2021-09-20
An Ode to Afrosurrealism
This exhibition explores the pioneering design strategy and lasting legacy of the historic Tokyo 1964 Olympic Games.
Open from Thu 5th Aug to Sun 7th Nov

Japan House
W8 5SA
2021-08-05
Tokyo 1964: Designing Tomorrow
A model of Japan's newest 'bullet train' is on display inside Japan House for a few weeks.
Open from Mon 6th Sep to Sun 7th Nov

Japan House
W8 5SA
2021-09-06
'Series N700S' Shinkansen railway model
An outdoor exhibition of sculpture that reasserts the liveliness of ordinary things.
Open from Thu 26th Aug to Fri 12th Nov

Canada Square Park
E14 5AB
2021-08-26
On the Other Hand
An exhibition of rarely seen paintings on paper from the final years of Mark Rothko’s life.
Open from Fri 8th Oct to Fri 12th Nov

Pace Gallery
2021-10-08
Mark Rothko 1968: Clearing Away
This group exhibition and artist led research project unearths and interrogates our connection with our habitats and ecosystems, both global and local.
Open from Tue 18th May to Sun 14th Nov

Orleans House Gallery
TW1 3DJ
2021-05-18
Remember the Future
In response to the climate emergency, artists Ackroyd & Harvey have installed Beuys’ Acorns, a group of 100 oak trees, on Tate Modern’s South Terrace
Open from Tue 4th May to Sun 14th Nov

Tate Modern
SE1 9TG
2021-05-04
Beuys’ Acorns
This display reflects on the role of humour in debates around identity, empire and power over the past two hundred years.
Open from Mon 17th May to Thu 25th Nov

Victoria and Albert Museum
SW7 2RL
2021-05-17
Laughing Matters: The State of a Nation
This display of artworks and manuscripts explores the life and interests of Joseph Banks (1743-1820) through some of his extraordinary collections.
Open from Mon 17th May to Thu 25th Nov

Natural History Museum
SW7 5BD
2021-05-17
The Artistic Legacy of Joseph Banks
This exhibition will display works from throughout the artist’s career and explore how her admiration for William Hogarth has inspired elements of her work.
Open from Tue 20th Jul to Fri 26th Nov

Hogarth's House
W4 2QN
2021-07-20
Regarding Forests by artist Chrystel Lebas features large-scale photographs taken during her travels around the world.
Open from Mon 6th Sep to Thu 2nd Dec

St Bartholomew’s Hospital North Wing
EC1A 7BE
2021-09-06
Regarding Forests
Comprising 58 works, this show will be the first posthumous and largest exhibition of Kossoff’s paintings in a commercial setting to date.
Open from Thu 30th Sep to Sat 4th Dec

Annely Juda Fine Art
W1S 1AW
2021-09-30
Leon Kossoff - A Life in Painting
The Southbank presents the most extensive exhibition of Gerhard Richter’s drawings ever shown in the UK.
Open from Thu 9th Sep to Sun 12th Dec

Hayward Gallery
SE1 8XX
2021-09-09
Gerhard Richter: Drawings, 1999 – 2021
This exhibition examines the pivotal role of women as both artists and as behind-the-scenes organisers within the Surrealist movement in Britain in the 1930s.
Open from Wed 19th May to Sun 12th Dec

Whitechapel Gallery
E1 7QX
2021-05-19
Phantoms of Surrealism
An exhibition that reflects on the Building Centre's key activities from 1931 to the present day
Open from Mon 7th Jun to Fri 17th Dec

The Building Centre
WC1E 7BT
2021-06-07
 Celebrating 90 years of the Building Centre – 1931 to the present day
Oxford House presents its latest exhibition, featuring photographs by Phillip Cunningham of Bethnal Green in the 1970s.
Open from Sat 9th Oct to Fri 17th Dec

Oxford House
E2 6HG
2021-10-09
Youth of Yesterday

A photography exhibition of young people in and around Bethnal Green taken in the 1970's by Philip Cunningham.
Open from Wed 22nd Sep to Fri 17th Dec

Oxford House
E2 6HG
2021-09-22
An exhibition exploring 400 years of emigration from Britain from the Mayflower to the present day through personal narratives, contemporary art and a range of media.
Open from Wed 19th May to Sun 19th Dec

Migration Museum
SE13 7HB
2021-05-19
Departures
An installation exploring two important social questions: who are our buildings and shared spaces for and how do they affect us?
Open from Mon 17th May to Thu 23rd Dec

Barbican Centre
EC2Y 8DS
2021-05-17
How We Live Now: Reimagining Spaces with Matrix Feminist Design Co-operative
The exhibition brings together rarely-seen original artwork and costumes, photographs, documents, audio and video to tell the story of Noël Coward's life.
Open from Mon 14th Jun to Thu 23rd Dec

Guildhall Art Gallery and Roman Amphitheater
EC2V 5AE
2021-06-14
Noël Coward: Art & Style
An exhibition about a dentist and Freemason noted for his philanthropy.
Open from Mon 17th May to Sat 25th Dec

Museum of Freemasonry
WC2B 5AZ
2021-05-17
Generous Dentist: Bartholomew Ruspini
Heather Phillipson engulfs Tate Britain’s grand central galleries with colour, sound and motion
Open from Sun 20th Jun to Wed 29th Dec

Tate Britain
SW1P 4RG
2021-06-20
RUPTURE NO 1: blowtorching the bitten peach
This exhibition follows the lives of soldiers in Germany over the past 75 years.
Open from Sun 12th Sep to Fri 31st Dec

National Army Museum
SW3 4HT
2021-09-12
 Foe to Friend: The British Army in Germany since 1945
An outdoor exhibition marking the 100th anniversary of the establishment of the seat of Poland’s diplomatic post in London at 47 Portland Place.
Open from Sun 2nd May to Fri 31st Dec

Embassy of the Republic of Poland
W1B 1JH
2021-05-02
Exhibition marking 100 years of Polish Embassy
In a new body of work created especially for Sir John Soane’s Museum, contemporary artist Pablo Bronstein presents his unique, seductive and deeply ironic vision of hell.
Open from Wed 6th Oct to Sun 2nd Jan 2022

Sir John Soane's Museum
WC2A 3BP
2021-10-06
Pablo Bronstein: Hell in its Heyday
This exhibition presents large scale photographs taken less than two months after the attacks, as the gravity of the 9/11 terror attacks left a new world in their wake.
Open from Fri 10th Sep to Sun 9th Jan 2022

Imperial War Museum
SE1 6HZ
2021-09-10
Wim Wenders: Photographing Ground Zero
An exhibition about the award-winning illustrator of children’s books
Open from Sat 4th Sep to Sun 9th Jan 2022

Heath Robinson Museum
HA5 1AE
2021-09-04
Korky Paul’s Magic of Illustration
This exhibition offers new commissions that take a deeper look at feelings of peace and balance.
Open from Thu 15th Jul to Sun 9th Jan 2022

Wellcome Collection
NW1 2BE
2021-07-15
Tranquillity
The objects, photographs and oral histories on display tell stories of people moving to and living, working, studying and growing up in Hackney, from the 1960s to today.
Open from Fri 22nd Oct to Sat 15th Jan 2022

Hackney Museum
E8 1GQ
2021-10-22
The exhibition invites audiences to consider one of ancient Korea’s most significant, but enigmatic, archaeological sites.
Open from Fri 20th Aug to Sat 22nd Jan 2022

London Mithraeum
EC4N 8AA
2021-08-20
Proposal for Sach’ŏnwang-sa
This exhibition celebrates the role of architectural models in shaping the spaces we live in.
Open from Sun 10th Oct to Fri 28th Jan 2022

The Building Centre
WC1E 7BT
2021-10-10
Shaping Space – Architectural Models Revealed
Documentary photography from the 70s and 80s
Open from Thu 30th Sep to Fri 4th Feb 2022

Tower Hamlets Local History Library & Archives
E1 4DQ
2021-09-30
The Vanished East End
An exhibition that offers a first look at the technologies being developed to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, to help mitigate the worst impacts of climate change.
Open from Wed 19th May to Thu 10th Feb 2022

Science Museum
SW7 2DD
2021-05-19
Our Future Planet
Explore the diversity of euphoric experiences and the effect of positive emotion on the body.
Open from Thu 15th Jul to Wed 23rd Feb 2022

Wellcome Collection
NW1 2BE
2021-07-15
Joy
London is and always has been a city of makers. Explore their stories in this display.
Open from Thu 7th Oct to Thu 24th Feb 2022

Museum of London
EC2Y 5HN
2021-10-07
London Making Now
A collection of work exploring artists’ responses to the Battle of Britain and the Blitz as they represented evolving machinery, communications, and urban landscapes, shaped by what was an unprecedented ‘war in the air’.
Open from Sun 12th Sep to Sun 27th Feb 2022

RAF Museum
NW9 5LL
2021-09-12
In Air and Fire: War Artists, the Battle of Britain and the Blitz
An experimental site-specific exhibition of new work by young British artist, Jonny Briggs.
Open from Wed 22nd Sep to Sun 6th Mar 2022

Burgh House and Hampstead Museum
NW3 1LT
2021-09-22
Knots: Jonny Briggs x Burgh House
Explore the 100-year history of the prestigious Royal Academy of Dance.
Open from Sun 20th Jun to Wed 16th Mar 2022

Victoria and Albert Museum
SW7 2RL
2021-06-20
On Point: Royal Academy of Dance at 100
A display exploring the central role food plays in Black enterprise and identity in South East London.
Open from Fri 16th Jul to Sat 9th Apr 2022

Museum of London Docklands
E14 4AL
2021-07-16
Feeding Black: Community, Power & Place
This exhibition will trace more than 200 years of extraordinary experiences and intense activity on a river that has always been essential to the city’s survival.
Open from Fri 22nd Oct to Sun 8th May 2022

Museum of London Docklands
E14 4AL
2021-10-22
London: Port City
An immersive exhibition exploring the latest cancer research taking place at the Crick - Europe’s largest biomedical research institute under one roof.
Open from Fri 10th Sep to Thu 30th Jun 2022

The Francis Crick Institute
NW1 1AT
2021-09-10
Outwitting Cancer - Making Sense of Nature's Enigma

Exhibitions opening soon

The British Antarctic Survey ship, the RRS Sir David Attenborough is visiting London, and there's a festival at the National Maritime Mueum.
Open from Thu 28th Oct to Sat 30th Oct
Ends this month

National Maritime Museum
SE10 9NF
2021-10-28
RSS Sir David Attenborough in Greenwich
Lifesize fire-lit video portraits of ancient Oak, Beech and Hornbeam pollards will be projected onto the tower of St Mary Aldermary Church.
Open from Thu 4th Nov to Thu 11th Nov

St Mary Aldermary
EC4M 9BW
2021-11-04
This project celebrates the 700th anniversary of the death of Dante Alighieri.
Open from Tue 9th Nov to Mon 22nd Nov

The Crypt Museum
EC3R 5BJ
2021-11-09
On Reflection: 700 years of Dante Alighieri
The Thousand Year Kingdom is the first solo museum exhibition in London of work by artist, writer and curator Cedar Lewisohn.
Open from Fri 29th Oct to Sun 28th Nov

Saatchi Gallery
SW3 4RY
2021-10-29
The Thousand Year Kingdom
Liminal features over 70 works created over the past three years by the London-based Italian artist ALO.
Open from Wed 3rd Nov to Sun 5th Dec

Saatchi Gallery
SW3 4RY
2021-11-03
Liminal by ALO
The former Geffrye museum's famous Christmas rooms display returns in the new Museum of the Home.
Open from Tue 9th Nov to Sun 9th Jan 2022

The Museum of the Home
E2 8EA
2021-11-09
Christmas Past
Showcasing previously unseen material from Paul McCartney’s personal archive, this display celebrates the life and art of one of the world’s most successful songwriters and performers.
Open from Fri 5th Nov to Sun 13th Mar 2022

The British Library
NW1 2DB
2021-11-05
Paul McCartney: The Lyrics
Kehinde Wiley is an American artist best known for his portraits that render people of colour in the traditional settings of Old Master paintings.
Open from Fri 10th Dec to Mon 18th Apr 2022

National Gallery
WC2N 5DN
2021-12-10
Kehinde Wiley
A once-in-a-century opportunity to see this iconic painting in the UK.
Open from Tue 25th Jan 2022 to Sun 15th May 2022

National Gallery
WC2N 5DN
2022-01-25
Gainsborough's Blue Boy
Step back through millennia and discover how this ancient civilization questioned, contemplated, and debated the natural world.
Open from Wed 17th Nov to Sun 5th Jun 2022

Science Museum
SW7 2DD
2021-11-17
Ancient Greeks: Science and Wisdom