Sin, Exhibition, National Gallery, London: 7 October 2020-3 January 2021

Although sin is something to which we can all relate, until now its relationship with art has never been fully considered. Featuring works spanning centuries, this exhibition shows for the first time how the idea of sin has been presented in the world of art.

In this exhibition, you’ll see that the meaning of sin in art has been constantly changing over the last few hundred years. William Hogarth’s 1743 painting 'The Tête à Tête', for example, depicts a husband who fails to hide his lover’s hat from his wife, suggesting that sin lies in disloyalty and lust. Other works in the exhibition have a less obvious meaning. Ron Mueck’s 2009 sculpture ‘Youth’ portrays a victim of a stabbing, leaving it up to you to decide whether he is a victim of someone else’s sin or being published for a sin that he has committed. Other pieces in the exhibition, such as the early 16th-century painting ‘The Mass of Saint Giles’, explore how you might free yourself from the burden of sin through forgiveness. 

15 works will be presented in the National Gallery, ranging from Andy Warhol to Tracy Emin and Ron Mueck, asking you to think about what the idea of sin means for you. 

Bronzino An Allegory with Venus and Cupid, about 1545 © The National Gallery, London
Bronzino An Allegory with Venus and Cupid, about 1545 © The National Gallery, London
Tracey Emin It was just a kiss, 2010 (photography of original 2010 work); Private collection © Tracey Emin. All rights reserved, DACS 2019
Tracey Emin It was just a kiss, 2010 (photography of original 2010 work); Private collection © Tracey Emin. All rights reserved, DACS 2019
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