Jeremy Deller gets radical, Inca treasures are unveiled and poppies spring up in Manchester – the week in art | Art


Exhibition of the week

Peru: A Journey in Time
Thousands of years of art and history should make for a revelatory experience, from the Nazca earth drawings that some connect with alien landings, to the splendour of the Incas and beyond.
British Museum, London, 11 November to 20 February.

Also showing

Jeremy Deller: Prints and Posters 1993 to 2021
The imaginative and witty radical presents a retrospective of his poster art, from I Love Melancholy to Fuck You 2020.
Modern Institute, Glasgow, until 22 January.

Listening to the Anthropocene
Sound and moving image art that senses our impact on earth. With Sarah Badr, Ben Rivers and more.
Coventry Cathedral until 22 January.

Mind and Mortality
Late portraits by Stanley Spencer in the picturesque locale where he lived and worked.
Stanley Spencer Gallery, Cookham, Berkshire, until 27 March.

Poppies
The ceramic poppies first seen at the Tower of London find a new installation and permanent home in Manchester.
Imperial War Museum North, Manchester, from 9 November.

Image of the week

Spacecial by Anna Devís and Daniel Rueda
Photograph: Anna Devís and Daniel Rueda

Spacecial, by Spanish artists Anna Devís and Daniel Rueda – who trained as architects, although buildings appear only as props or sets for meticulously posed characters in their work. Their images can look like illustrations and yet are photographs, created with very little digital editing. Spacecial is from their series What the Hat, which turns a fedora into an avocado stone, a musical note and a daisy. See full gallery here.

What we learned

Posters in Liverpool for Homotopia festival’s Queer the City exhibition were vandalised

Tracey Emin said she had been written off as a “narcissistic, deranged, screaming banshee”

A “museum of the future” in Rotterdam will open up the huge Bojimans collection

A new photographic collection captures the upbeat, joyous side of life in the Arab world

Statues and ruins of an hedonistic Roman party resort are now a marine visitor attraction

Sculptor Sergio Furnari conceded he didn’t have permission for his New York Central Park Covid heart monument

Ai Weiwei said it was ‘“positive to be poor as a child. You understand how vulnerable our humanity can be”

Teaching art can help prisoners

History, georgraphy and Black British masculinities are being explored in Nottingham

Petrit Halilaj depicted the trauma of war as a child

The Queen Elizabeth platinum jubilee landmark in Northumberland will go ahead despite opposition

Winners of Australia’s national architecture awards were announced …

… while a plan for an almost windowless student megadorm in California raised alarm

The Australian sculptor Ramesh Mario Nithiyendran revealed his most cherished objects …

… while Melbourne artists are in survival mode as galleries reopen

“Starchitects” Herzog & de Meuron reject the idea of having a “moralistic standpoint”

John Constable’s late paintings are figurative, abstract and staggering to behold …

… while Fragonard’s true genius was revealed after restoration of The Swing

Photographer Paul McDonald has turned the lens on himself and his male friends …

… while Rankin revealed the magicians behind London’s West End shows …

… and photos by Martin Parr have been twinned with images by amateur snappers

Classic seven-inch singles have been turned into paintings

Marilyn Stafford blazed a trail for female photographers

William Blake’s cottage is at risk of being lost, says Historic England

The amateur snaps twinned with Martin Parr’s – in pictures

The names of the winners of the Emerging Photography awards 2021

How Thom Yorke and Stanley Donwood made artworks for Radiohead …

And how Hogarth said adieu to gin and became a proud European

Masterpiece of the week

Magic Mirror of Doctor John Dee; obsidian; wood case covered in tooled leather with label in handwriting of Horace Walpole, quotation from a Samuel Butler poem.
Magic Mirror of Doctor John Dee; obsidian; wood case covered in tooled leather with label in handwriting of Horace Walpole, quotation from a Samuel Butler poem.

John Dee’s Magical Mirror, Aztec, 1300s to early 1500s
This disc of polished black obsidian belonged to the astrologist and magician John Dee, who performed occult services for Queen Elizabeth I and may have been Shakespeare’s model for Prospero in The Tempest. Its association with the most famous conjurer of the English Renaissance gives it a fascinating frisson of hocus pocus that is enhanced by its reflective dark sheen, like a vision of a black hole. But it came from Mexico where it was originally part of the magical and religious rites of the Aztec empire. So a supernatural Aztec object became a supernatural European object, suggesting the New and Old Worlds were not so different after all.
British Museum, London

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