Bridget Riley, Hayward Gallery, London
This major retrospective of British artist Bridget Riley brings together her iconic black and white paintings from the 1960s, various expansive canvases in colour, plus early figurative works and recent wall paintings. Perhaps even more intriguing is the inclusion of her rarely-seen drawings, studies and preparatory materials, offering an insight into the artist’s working methods from 1947 to the present day. Other highlights include Continuum, which remains Riley’s only fully realised three-dimensional work.
Until 26 January

ZouZou Group: – door open –, Ikon, Birmingham
Located in Ikon’s Tower Room, – door open – is a new video installation is by the ZouZou Group, which comprises two anonymous artists, one Syrian from Damascus, the other British, living in England. It is the result of an ongoing dialogue conducted purely through online messaging and filesharing mobile phone video footage. The space features three screens that ‘speak to and across each other’, with the results exploring the constraints and imbalances of working together across the boundary of a war zone and longstanding military dictatorship.
Until 23 February

Rewriting The Future, Site Gallery, Sheffield
It’s the last few weeks of this superb exhibition at Site Gallery featuring work by Sophia Al Maria, Sonya Dyer, Ursula Mayer and Victoria Sin. The show proposes that, in a world ruled by patriarchal societies and systems, feminist perspectives can offer new angles on gender, power, ecology and community. Highlights include Mayer’s large-scale film installation ATOM SPIRIT, Sin’s And at the pinnacle the foot of a mountain, which imagines a world that is non human-centric, and Dyer’s Hailing Frequencies Open, which reimagines the history and potentiality of space travel. In addition, Al Maria’s hyper-colour moving image work The Magical State which explores the extraction of fossil fuels from desecrated land as a kind of ritualistic, violent exorcism imposed on the abject ‘female’ body.
Until 26 January

Louise Giovanelli, Manchester Art Gallery, Manchester
Manchester based artist Louise Giovanelli recently undertook a major Arts Council England funded research project to visit early panel paintings and frescoes in Europe and the US. Using The Crucifixion by the school of Buoninsegna di Duccio from the 14th century as her starting point, her new paintings are also been influenced by early Renaissance masters Duccio, Giotto and Piero della Francesca. This show includes a selection of Giovanelli’s work, alongside rarely-seen early Renaissance panel paintings from the collection of Manchester Art Gallery, plus contemporary works by artists including Victor Man and Mark Manders.
Until 19 April

Chance & Control: Art in the Age of Computers, Firstsite, Colchester
This exhibition explores how artists and programmers have used computers to create prints, drawings, paintings, photographs and digital artworks since the 1960s. Drawing on the V&A’s collection of computer-generated art, it includes work by pioneering digital artists such as Desmond Paul Henry, Frieder Nake and Georg Nees, who produced some of the earliest computer art, as well as work by a younger generation of contemporary artists. Part of Firstsite’s current programme focusing on digital culture.
Until 26 January

1. Bridget Riley, Blaze 1, 1962. Private collection, on long loan to National Galleries of Scotland 2017. © Bridget Riley 2019. All rights reserved. Photo © National Galleries of Scotland
2. ZouZou Group, Damascus street, still from – door open –, 2019.
3. Victoria Sin, Rewriting The Future. Photo: Jules Lister
4. Louise Giovanelli, Marker II, 2019.
5. Desmond Paul Henry, Untitled, 1964.

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Catch up with all our 2019 – How was it for you? features including interviews with Paul Maheke, Nicky Hirst, Lucy Harvey, Jerome Ince-Mitchell, and more