1 Paul Nash
The art of Paul Nash includes moving and eerie depictions of both the wars that defined the 20th century. He sums up the horror of the western front in his 1918 painting We Are Making A New World and 1941’s Totes Meer (Dead Sea) portrays a dump of crashed German planes as a dreamlike moonlit vision. A welcome showing for the Constable of barbed wire, Nash makes the landscape tradition speak powerfully and pertinently to the modern condition.
2 Power And Protection: Islamic Art And The Supernatural
The beauty of Islamic art is seen in books, talismans and banners in this exhibition on divination and magic in the Islamic world. Instead of only showing the art of courts and mosques, it explores popular culture and practical prayers, from geomantic tablets used for prophesying the future to gorgeous representations of the hand of Fatima, which was said to ward off evil spirits.
Ashmolean Museum, Oxford, to 15 Jan
3 The View From Here
From the early days of photography, lush monochrome prints conveyed the wonder of elsewhere. Landscape, the great theme of Romantic painting, enthused photographers who wanted to prove the artistic merit of their new technology. The earliest pictures in this survey of landscape photography were taken in the 1840s when JMW Turner was still alive. Victorian views of the pyramids and Niagara Falls star alongside later works in an exhibition that may have you looking up holiday flights.
Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Edinburgh, Sat to 30 Apr
4 Deimantas Narkevičius
On 20 July 2015, a group of Stalin-era propaganda statues was removed from the centre of Vilnius, capital of Lithuania, purportedly for repairs. Narkevičius was there to film it. The resulting 3D video installation is a meditation on memory and forgetting. As the statues fall, you might contemplate the ease with which history can be erased.
5 Victorian Decoded: Art And Telegraphy
This is an exhibition about how 19th-century art was influenced by the laying of the first transatlantic cable 150 years ago. In fact, the Victorian imagination revealed here dwells as much on the sublime Atlantic as the wonders of telegraphy. It even includes transmissions from the spirit world: a Landseer painting of the doomed Franklin polar exhibition that is said to be haunted.