Welcome to the ianVisits guide to alternative exhibitions opening soon in London.

Displayed in date order by how soon they open.

Free  Fruit of Friendship: Portraits by Mary Beale
Opening Thursday, 25th Apr
Mary Beale (1633-1699) was one of Britain’s first professional woman artists and is subject of this exhibition featuring 25 of her works from public and private collections, including some never seen before in public.


This exhibition examines a collection of works on paper made by British colonialists in nineteenth-century India.

£9.50  HEROES: The British invasion of American comics
Opening Thursday, 25th Apr
Discover how British artists and writers invaded America and made their mark on iconic superheroes and more.

This exhibition presents a rare & unique opportunity to see original prints by Deakin once owned by Francis Bacon.

For centuries, Black communities have created music in the UK, melding global influences into a Black British sound that has echoed through generations.


£16  Michelangelo: the last decades
Opening Thursday, 2nd May
This exhibition looks at the last 30 years of Michelangelo's remarkable life.


£16.50  World Press photo exhibition
Opening Friday, 3rd May
The World Press Photo Contest highlights the year’s most impactful visual stories, fostering a deeper understanding of pressing global issues.

Free  Terry Higgins Memorial Quilt
Opening Wednesday, 8th May
On display in the chapel will be a special new quilt dedicated to Terry Higgins, commissioned by the trust to mark their 40th Anniversary year.

£9  A Fine Line: Modern Makers at Pitzhanger
Opening Wednesday, 8th May
An exhibition of modern ceramics and glass, curated by Joanna Bird.


Free  Fran Hayes | Thick, Stretchy, Sticky Space
Opening Friday, 10th May
Thick, Stretchy, Sticky Space features digital paintings and video works that delve into speculative landscapes.


Free  LCW - Chihuly at Chelsea Barracks
Opening Monday, 13th May
See Chihuly’s glass sculptures in the public spaces dotted around Chelsea Barracks.


Free  LCW - Chinese Design: Harmony in Diversity
Opening Monday, 13th May
An exhibition showcasing traditional Chinese crafts alongside innovative modern designs.


Free  LCW - Meisterstrasse in Residence
Opening Tuesday, 14th May
An exhibition in the Austrian Embassy of practices ranging from mouth-blown glass to traditional porcelain, hats, jewellery and more.

Free  LCW - The Gilded City
Opening Tuesday, 14th May
Set within the ornate Painters’ Hall, the exhibition offers a glimpse into the activities of the guild and the variety of work being produced by the freemen and liverymen of the fifth oldest of the 111 livery companies in the City of London.

£7.50  Sergio Strizzi: The Perfect Moment
Opening Wednesday, 15th May
Sergio Strizzi (1931 – 2004) is considered one of cinematic still photography’s greatest talents.


£13.13  Faithful Companions: Charles Dickens & his Pets
Opening Wednesday, 15th May
This is the first exhibition to celebrate the animals that found their way into the books and homes of Charles Dickens.


Free  Design Discoveries: Towards a DESIGN MUSEUM JAPAN
Opening Wednesday, 15th May
Japan’s leading creators share inspirational design that spans disciplines, regions and eras.


Spanning 400 years, this exhibition follows women on their journeys to becoming professional artists.


£19  Royal Portraits: A Century of Photography
Opening Friday, 17th May
This exhibition charts the evolution of royal portrait photography from the 1920s to the present day, bringing together more than 150 photographic prints, proofs and documents from the Royal Collection and the Royal Archives.

Showcasing over 300 rare prints from 140 photographers, this exhibition is a major presentation of twentieth and twenty-first century photography on loan from the private collection of Sir Elton John and David Furnish.


The church will be cleared of pews and filled with spectacular flower displays alongside an exhibition of historic floral-themed vestments, which are worn by the clergy throughout the religious year.

£5  Oliver Enwonwu: A Continued Legacy
Opening Tuesday, 21st May
The exhibition will feature paintings, drawings and sculpture by Oliver Enwonwu, as well as works by his father, the acclaimed pioneer African modernist artist, Ben Enwonwu.

Free  Chelsea and Belgravia in Bloom
Opening Wednesday, 22nd May
During the week of the Chelsea Flower Show, loads of shops and streets around Chelsea and Belgravia become a free floral show all of their own.


£16.50  Birds: Brilliant and Bizarre
Opening Friday, 24th May
Unravel the epic story of birds, discover the secrets to their success and learn some of their surprising and often shocking tactics for survival.


The first-ever, walk-through photography exhibition that tells the untold story of how Princess Diana changed the world – through the lens of her official photographer.


Opening Sunday, 26th May
This exhibition showcases four award-winning photographers and filmmakers undertaking ground-breaking work in their practices of eco-conscious photography and film.


£12  Beyond Fashion
Opening Friday, 31st May
Beyond Fashion showcases the work of acclaimed fashion photographers from around the world.


Free  Discover Degas & Miss La La
Opening Thursday, 6th Jun
Degas’s Miss La La at the Cirque Fernando takes centre stage in this exhibition that sheds light on this work with newly discovered information about the painting and its sitter.


Free  Discover Degas & Miss La La
Opening Thursday, 6th Jun
Degas’s 'Miss La La at the Cirque Fernando' takes centre stage in this exhibition that sheds light on this work with newly discovered information about the painting and its sitter.


£18  Zanele Muholi
Opening Thursday, 6th Jun
Over 300 photographs will be brought together to present the breadth of Muholi’s career to date, from their very first body of work to their latest and on-going series.


£21  Six Lives The Stories of Henry VIII’s Queens
Opening Thursday, 20th Jun
Tudor paintings by Hans Holbein the Younger and contemporary photography by Hiroshi Sugimoto meet in the National Portrait Gallery’s first exhibition of historic portraiture since reopening.

This exhibition examines the lives, careers and artists exhibited by art dealers who were driven out of Continental Europe by Nazi rule to seek refuge in Britain.


Coming to the market for the first time in more than 145 years, Titian’s early masterpiece "Rest on the Flight into Egypt" will be on display at Christie's auction house prior to being sold.


£18  Barbie: The Exhibition
Opening Friday, 5th Jul
Journey into the Barbie universe and discover over 250 remarkable objects, with rare, unique and innovative dolls dating from 1959 to the present day.


£19  Drawing the Italian Renaissance
Opening Friday, 1st Nov
Bringing together around 160 of these works by more than 80 artists, this exhibition explores how drawing became central to every stage of the creative process.


Free  Parmigianino: The Vision of Saint Jerome
Opening Thursday, 5th Dec
The National Gallery celebrates the first public display in a decade, following conservation, of a masterpiece of Italian Mannerism, Parmigianino’s Madonna and Child with Saints