Download our FREE smartphone app today!
Posted on August 16th 2018
Free Artsy Days Out to Enjoy - Try One This Week!
If you’re stuck for something to do during what’s left of the holiday, here are some great suggestions for artsy days out. Even better, the vast majority are completely free!
The National Gallery houses great paintings from European history - medieval to modern times. Free entry. It’s in Trafalgar Square so you can also see Nelson’s column and the Fourth Plinth Project, which currently has art work by Michael Rakowitz, who has recreated the Lamassu. This winged bull and protective deity (pictured) guarded the entrance to Nergal Gate of Nineveh (near modern day Mosul) from c700 BC until it was destroyed by Daesh in 2015. Free.
Victoria & Albert Museum
The Victoria & Albert Museum is filled with various crafts from around the world, so you can explore everything from fashion through the ages to glass design. This is also next door to the Natural History Museum and the Science Museum. Free entry.
V&A Museum of Childhood
The Museum of Childhood in Bethnal Green has its own sand pit and Punch and Judy, plus lots of interactive displays to keep kids entertained. Great for smaller children. Free entry.
The British Museum has a vast display of antiquities from around the world, many of which have contentious colonial histories. Art objects from Nigeria to Japan, Egypt to medieval Britain are housed in the collections. Our favourites are the Benin bronzes and the clock room. Free entry.
Tate Modern and Tate Britain
Tate Modern (a vast gallery with modern and contemporary art from mainly Western collections) and Tate Britain (British art displayed in time line order, so you can walk through the centuries) offer free entry to their main collections.
South London Gallery
Our local South London Gallery offers free entry for all. Currently showing work from a Brazilian artist Luiz Zerbini.
We also have the Horniman Museum on our doorstep, with everything from a mini farm and aquarium to art objects from the South Americas, musical instruments from various cultures, and of course the famous over-stuffed walrus. Free entry.
The Hayward Gallery has recently reopened along the South Bank. This currently has a sculpture exhibition on by Lee Bul – a contemporary work with performance, film and light sculptures from throughout the artist’s career. Entry fee but free for under 16s.
White Cube Bermondsey
White Cube Bermondsey is a small gallery currently with a group show looking at the theme of memory. Free entry.
The Whitechapel Gallery
The Whitechapel Gallery has a group show looking at experiences of living in a global city. Free entry.
If you don’t like the idea of going to a traditional gallery, check out The Line. This is London's first dedicated modern and contemporary art walk. The route runs between the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and The O2, following the waterways and the line of the Meridian.
Walking the City
The City of London website also has a range of interesting walks that let you discover the City from different viewpoints. Free.
If street art is more your thing this map compiled by the Londonist takes you around the streets of Shorditch. Free.