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Out & About: RA Summer Exhibition

The Royal Academy’s Summer Show never fails to impress – stepping inside the wonderful star studded gates makes you feel like hugging an old friend – she is celebrating her 250th year after all.

It is one of the largest open submission exhibits in the world. The Summer Exhibition creates an opportunity for artists from all backgrounds to be displayed shoulder to shoulder with the likes of Jo Tilson, David Hockney, Anish Kapoor, Tracy Emin and Anselm Kiefer.

This year, the show is curated by Jock McFayden, a British painter who has installed an animal themed “Menagerie” in the Wohl Central Hall.

Themes of light and time are evident as you explore the galleries. It feels rather like antiquing at Kempton flea market – hidden treasures are ripe for the picking, but you really have to hunt them out. Here are a few of our favourites pieces:

Image 1: Andrezj Jackowski - “The Remembered Present”. Image 2: Eileen Cooper “Midnight Hour” Image 3: Bichsaem Kwon “The Tent”

The youngest artist in the show is 10 years old and the oldest 99 years old. Some of the paintings are still dripping wet – fresh off the press!

We have always loved the way the Summer Show is a democratic hanging of art. Where else can you see such a range of artworks hanging side by side. It challenges us as the viewer to really look and explore.

Mick Rooney 'Children of the Storm'

This year my favourite room was the Architectural section which has been selected by Piers Gough RA.

There are three dimensional works of all sizes and scales, little peepholes into miniature houses and large model expanses of entire cities. The exhibition includes works by Richard Rogers and Norman Foster, alongside emerging practices from around the world.

I usually go back five or six times. It is a guarantee that I will discover something new every time, little details and curiosities which are so inspiring and make the Summer Show so special.

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