Exhibition of the week
Romanticism and realism fiercely blend in this painter who recorded the rise and fall of hope in the US.
• National Gallery, from 10 September until 8 January
A statue of Baptist preacher John Chilembwe takes its place in Trafalgar Square, towering over a smaller figure of white missionary John Chorley in this recreation of a 1914 photograph from today’s Malawi.
• Fourth Plinth, Trafalgar Square, London from 14 September
Lyrical globetrotting landscapes by the genius of Victorian nonsense poetry.
• Ikon, Birmingham, until 13 November
Manuscripts by Ada Lovelace and Mary Shelley star in this survey of Artificial Intelligence in science and sci fi.
• Bodleian Library Weston Gallery, Oxford, until 26 September
Enigmatic abstract paintings full of architectural imagery by this veteran Belgian artist.
• White Cube Mason’s Yard, London, until October
Image of the week
At just 29, Jadé Fadojutimi is the art world’s hottest young talent. Her works have already sold for over £1m and I Present Your Royal Highness (above) has been collected by the Tate. Her process is intense, both physically and emotionally – she dances and runs at the canvas, scales ladders, cries, and sometimes breaks off to write in her diary. She works on her own, through the night, with her favourite soundtracks blasting out, and sometimes she can finish a painting in a single night if she feels gripped. “It becomes a force that just takes over,” she says. “I always want to call it witchcraft.” Read our full interview here.
What we learned
Masterpiece of the week
Fishermen Carrying a Drowned Man by Jozef Israëls, 1861
The crushed and hopeless forms of the people bringing home a fisherman drowned in his daily work are darkly framed against greyness in this compassionate scene of life and death by the North Sea. Dutch painter Israëls spent time living in Zandvoort, a fishing village near Haarlem in the Netherlands, before painting it in his Amsterdam studio. The closeness and common pain of the figures makes us feel the sorrow of an entire community. It is as if they have all drowned. The burden of grief won’t lift lightly. And beyond are the sea and sky, featureless, endless.
• National Gallery, London
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