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The stage is set this autumn for some of the most exciting events of the year

STYLE STATEMENTS From men’s fashion to Beatrix Potter, the V&A has unveiled next year’s exhibition programme.

Above Fashioning Masculinities: The Art of Menswear, Gucci 2019 men’s tailoring campaign, courtesy of Gucci

Right Watercolour from The Tale of Jemima Puddle-Duck by Beatrix Potter, 1908, courtesy of National Trust and Frederick Warne & Co. © National Trust

Opening in February, Beatrix Potter: Drawn to Nature celebrates the life and work of one of the 20th-century’s best-loved children’s authors using original watercolours, drawings and manuscripts, as well as personal artefacts and Potter’s letters.

While in March, Fashioning Masculinities: The Art of Menswear will be the first major V&A exhibition to celebrate men’s appearance – from classical sculptures and Renaissance paintings to 20th-century photographs. Later shows will explore African fashion and popular contemporary South Korean culture.

Samson Kambalu, Antelope, 2021, will take up residency overlooking Trafalgar Square

Fourth men A statue of the Malawian Baptist preacher John Chilembwe (18711915), who led the 1915 uprising against colonial rule in then Nyasaland, is the next resident of Trafalgar Square’s fourth plinth.

Antelope, the work of Malawi born, Oxford-based artist Samson Kambalu (b.1975), restages a 1914 photograph of Chilembwe and the European missionary John Chorley as a sculpture.

Chilembwe is portrayed wearing a hat in defiance of the colonial rule forbidding Africans wearing hats before white people.

Three of the four plinths in the square have permanent statues, with one reserved for guest sculptures.

Extra yard Three sketchbooks by the self-taught artist and mariner Alfred Wallis (1855-1942), made in the last year of his life in a St Ives workhouse due to illness and poverty, have been acquired by a Cambridge gallery.

Kettle’s Yard, founded by Jim Ede, one of Wallis’s principal patrons, bought the sketchbooks after they were on display at its recent exhibition, Alfred Wallis Rediscovered.

Wallis, who started painting in his 70s after the death of his wife, was sent to the Madron Public Assistance Institution in 1871, where his already failing health continued to decline. As well as familiar sketches based on his time at sea, the books contain religious subjects, which perhaps point to the artist’s awareness of his own mortality in the final year of his life.

Right The sketchbooks have been acquired by Kettle’s Yard


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