5 Must-See Exhibits Around The World For Art Enthusiasts

Must-see art exhibits around the world. Yayoi Kusama, (Japanese, born 1929) Phallic Girl 1967 Mannequin with mixed media 61 × 34 1/4 × 16 15/16 in., (155 × 87 × 43 cm) Collection of Caroline de Westenholz © Yayoi Kusama
Yayoi Kusama, (Japanese, born 1929). Phallic Girl. 1967.  Mannequin with mixed media. Collection of Caroline de Westenholz. © Yayoi Kusama

Photo Credit: ©Tate, London 2017

Just in case you need another excuse to travel or have a persistent case of wanderlust, we’ve rounded up 5 must-see art exhibits from around the world that are worth the trip. The list will take you from conversation art in Vienna to history-packed exhibits in Cape Town, from mind-bending art techniques in Ontario to abstract love in London–all in a matter of minutes. When you’re done, we can’t promise you won’t immediately purchase your summer vacation tickets or hit up your nearest art exhibit, but we can promise that the art enthusiast in you will be elated.

Here are five breathtaking must-see art exhibits that are worth the travel and will leave you with a permanent impression of Summer 2018.


Must-See Art Exhibits Around The World Picasso, Nude Woman in a Red Armchair on exhibit at Tate in England
Picasso, Nude Woman in a Red Armchair, N06205

Photo Credit: Tate Modern

Picasso had a long career as an artist, however 1932 was a rather extraordinary year for him. This was the year he became an actual celebrity painter, sought after by all kinds painters and professors in art, and then, naturally, one of the most influential artists of the 20th century. During this time, the sensuality exhibited in his paintings was a little more aggressive and therefore elicited more emotional responses and appreciation. In 1932 he also created some of his more loved works of art, including “Nude Woman in a Red Armchair,” the star of Tate’s collection. The exhibit includes confident color-saturated portraits and Surrealist experiments, including 13 seminal ink drawings of the Crucifixion. His virtuoso paintings also riffed on the voluptuous sculptures he had produced some months before at his new country estate.

This is Tate Modern‘s  first ever solo exhibition of Pablo Picasso’s work and also one of the most ambitious shows in the museum’s history–making it one the most popular must-see art exhibits. The EY Exhibition: Picasso 1932 – Love, Fame, Tragedy takes visitors on a month-by-month journey through 1932. It features over 100 outstanding paintings, sculptures, and works on paper demonstrating his prolific and restlessly inventive character, stripping away common myths to reveal the man and the artist in his full complexity and richness.


  • Location: London, Tate Modern
  • Date: Ongoing through September 9, 2018
  • More info on the Tate Modern site.


Must-see art exhibits around the world. Yayoi Kusama (Japanese, born 1929). Infinity Mirrored Room, The Souls of Millions of Light Years Away, 2013, wood, metal, mirrors, plastic acrylic, rubber, LEDs, and water. Courtesy of David Zwirner New York. Copyright Yayoi Kusama.
Yayoi Kusama (Japanese, born 1929). Infinity Mirrored Room, The Souls of Millions of Light Years Away, 2013, wood, metal, mirrors, plastic acrylic, rubber, LEDs, and water. Courtesy of David Zwirner New York. Copyright Yayoi Kusama.

Photo Credit: The High Museum of Art, Atlanta

There aren’t too many living legends around in the art world today but Yayoi Kusama is one of them. Her avant-garde art has made people from all over the world travel thousands of miles to experience her must-see art exhibits and mind-bending installations – most recently “Infinity Mirrors.” It features six rooms completely mirrored and plastered in her famous polka dot patterns and pumpkin lanterns, all reflecting into infinity and timelessness.

Upcoming tour dates:

Cleveland Museum of Art: July 9 – September 30

High Museum of Art in Atlanta: November 18 – February 19, 2019

Find more information on Yayoi Kusama, her tour dates, and future exhibitions on her site.


Must-See Art Exhibits Around The World Zeitz MOCAA - Capetown, South Africa
Zeitz MOCAA – Capetown, South Africa

Photo Credit: Zeitz MOCAA

One of the most remarkable additions to the landscape of art is the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa (Zeitz MOCAA) located in Cape Town, South Africa. Opening to rave reviews from the art world in September 2017, South Africa’s largest art museum preserves, researches, and exhibits twenty-first century art from Africa and its Diaspora. The building is a spectacular hollowed-out grain silo which sits on Cape Town’s famous Victoria & Alfred Waterfront.

The Zeitz MOCAA is a public not-for-profit contemporary art museum which not only hosts international exhibitions, but also develops supporting educational and enrichment programs intending to encourage intercultural understanding. It holds over one hundred galleries, spread over nine floors. One of their current exhibits include: PENNY SIOPIS, THIS IS A TRUE STORY: SIX FILMS (1997 – 2017), which brings together works made over a twenty-year period by South African artist Penny Siopis. While Siopis is best known for her paintings, the focus of this exhibition is on the medium of film as an essential part of her practice.

There are six chambers where you’ll find, projected in each, the first-person narrative of an individual caught up in larger social and political forces. The stories include a Greek migrant, a disembodied Irish nun, and a man not at home in his own mind. The individuals’ stories become connected through a shared sense of real and imagined displacement in Southern Africa. One of the of the most sought after exhibits by those with a true travel bug and one of the most stimulating on our list of must-see art exhibits from around the world–it will quench the curiosity of history buffs and activists alike.


  • Location: Cape Town, Zeitz MOCAA
  • The Penny Siopis, This Is A True Story: Six Films (1997 – 2017) exhibit shows through 15 July 2018
  • Visit the Zeitz Mocca site for more information on current exhibits.


Must-See Art Exhibits Around The World SKIN DEEP. HAIR DRESSERS, BARBERS, BEAUTICIANS exhibit at the Wien Museu
Skin Deep: Hairdressers, Barbers, Beauticians exhibit at the Wien Museum

Photo Credit: Wien Museum

The subject matter for this exhibit seems trivial, but the art associated with it is what’s interesting. The idea of maintaining our beauty, regardless of gender, has been part of all cultures since the beginning of humanity. The exhibition, Skin Deep,” discusses the practices and meanings of modern body care and styling from the eighteenth century onwards. It focuses on shaving, hair care, and cosmetics in the Viennese context. For example, you’ll find Empress Elisabeth of Austria and her most famous looks. The exhibit also touches on hair trends throughout the years, like the bob for women, and long locks for men. A men’s “toilet bag,” electric hair dryer from the 1930’s, many versions of the mustache, and other curious items that will elevate your cultural experience in Vienna

“The desire to style one’s own body has given rise to a whole range of techniques, products and, above all, specific occupations, such as barber, hairdresser, cosmetician, and wigmaker. In fact, beauty has always been and remains a product of work. Equally, just as people ‘work on’ their bodies, they have always oriented themselves towards norms, conventions and, not least, models.” – The Wien Museum


  • Location: Vienna, Wien Museum
  • Date: Ongoing through January 6, 2019
  • Visit the Wien Museum site for more information


Must-See Art Exhibits Around The World Greer Lankton, (American, 1958–1996) Rachel 1986 Papier-mâché, metal plates, wire, acrylic paint, and matte medium 28 × 21 × 11 in. (71.1 × 53.3 × 27.9 cm) Collection of Eric Ceputis and David W. Williams, promised gift to the Art Institute of Chicago. Greer Lankton Archives Museum. Photo: The Art Institute of Chicago / Art Resource, NY On view are The Met Breuer for the Like Life: Sculpture, Color, and the Body (1300–Now) exhibit.
Greer Lankton, (American, 1958–1996). Rachel. 1986. Papier-mâché, metal plates, wire, acrylic paint, and matte medium.  Collection of Eric Ceputis and David W. Williams, promised gift to the Art Institute of Chicago. Greer Lankton Archives Museum.

Photo Credit: The ArtInstitute of Chicago / Art Resource, NY.

In the groundbreaking exhibition Like Life: Sculpture, Color, and the Body (1300–Now) at The Met Breuer, you will be embraced by the very relevant issue of realism in art. Historically, Western art has represented a very idealized version of humanity, for example pristine, spartan-like white marble statues. However, The Met Breuer tries to break this tradition with this impressive collection of sculptures expressing a sort of unedited version of what things and people actually look like. Like Life places key sculptures from different eras in conversation with each other to evaluate the different techniques used by artists to obscure the difference between original and copy, and life and art.

“Foremost among these is the application of color to imitate skin and flesh. Other tactics include the use of casts taken from real bodies, dressing sculpted figures in clothing, constructing movable limbs and automated bodies, even incorporating human blood, hair, teeth, and bones. Uncanny in their approximation of life, such works have the potential to unsettle and disarm observers, forcing us to consider how we see ourselves and
others, and to think deeply about our shared humanity.” –The Met Breuer

You’ll find the famous Michael Jackson and Bubbles sculpture by Jeff Koons, Yayoi Kusama’s Phallic Girl, John Gibson’s The Tinted Venus, among other striking presentations. Fans of realism and modern art alike flock to the final entry on our list of must-see art exhibits from around.


  • Location: The Met Breuer
  • Date: Ongoing through July 22, 2018
  • For more information visit The Met Breuer site