El Anatsui - just one of the many artists who have contributed to this year's Summer Exhibition - is best known for his grand, large-scale pieces, that are often draped over buildings and monuments like an ancient relic or realisation in fabric of a medieval icon. A list of his materials, however, may conjure up an all together contradictory image. Using discarded bottle caps, aluminium and wire Anatsui creates pieces that at first seem as smooth and luxurious as silk or velvet but ultimately reveal a far more complex tangle of prosperity, poverty, beauty and rot.
The Royal Academy's show is curated in part by Grayson Perry this year and coincides with the institution's 250th birthday. All in all there are 1,300 artworks on display and available to buy. This year's exhibition includes a notable amount of textile-based pieces. Here are just a few of our favourites...
Until 19 August 2018
Francesca Colussi 'EMMELINE'
Debbie Lawson 'RED BEAR'
Joana Vasconcelos 'ROYAL VALKYRIE'