What We’re Looking Forward To in 2022: Part One

After a rather lacklustre 2021, 2022 is looking stellar in terms of cultural releases. We've rounded up the best in TV, film and art to see this year.


Kicking off this month is The Gilded Age, (NOW, 25th January) Julian Fellowes’ latest costume drama which is set in 1880s America and stars Meryl Streep’s daughter, Louisa Jacobsen.  (Do read this fascinating piece from Town & Country on Fellowes’ breakthrough film Gosford Park celebrating it’s 20th anniversary this year).

The much anticipated Series 2 of Bridgerton is released 25th March on Netflix in which this time it’s the turn of the eldest son, Anthony, to look for a marriage partner (his sassy love interest is provided by Simone Ashley, one of the stars of Love Education).

And f you’re in the mood for yet more period drama (and we always are!) then don’t miss Dakota Johnson in Persuasion on Netflix coming in May with Henry Golding as her cousin, Mr Elliot.

On the 22nd July, Where the Crawdads Sing, the film adaptation of the best-selling book starring Daisy Edgar-Jones will be released and on 24th June, Baz Luhrmann’s Elvis Presley Biopic is out (and already generating Oscar buzz). Followed closely by Ana de Armas, who will make her Netflix debut as Marilyn Monroe in Andrew Dominik’s adaptation of Joyce Carol Oates’ Blonde.

Still to find release dates but coming out later this year are: Series 5 of The Crown, Sally Rooney’s Conversations with Friends on BBC3 and the tv adaptation of the Dolly Alderton novel, Everything I know about Love on BBC1.

And finally, just started filming this month is Ridley Scott’s Napoleon Bonaparte biopic starring Joaquin Phoenix – who last worked with Scott on his Oscar-winning epic Gladiator – and who will star as the French general in Kitbag, while Jodie Comer will appear as Empress Joséphine. We can’t wait!



Starting off a great year of art shows, is Francis Bacon: Man and Beast at the Royal Academy (29th January – 17th April 2022).  Bacon’s visceral paintings trace the fine line between what is human and what is animal in this exhibition that brings together some of his earliest works and final paintings, many never shown in one setting before.  See a trailer for the show here.

From 3rd February until 8th May, The Courtauld Gallery  will stage the first-ever exhibition of 15 of Van Gogh’s self-portraits.  including Self-Portrait as a Painter (1853-1890), Self-Portrait with Bandaged Ear (1889) and Self-Portrait with Grey Felt Hat (1887) .  Many of these are rarely loaned so it will be fascinating to see so many of them (about half his total self-portraiture) together.

Self-Portrait with Grey Felt Hat by Vincent Van Gogh (1887)

Indeed, February continues to be a bumper month for art openings. On the 9th February, Louise Bourgeois: The Woven Child opens at The Hayward Gallery (running until 15th March) which is the first major exhibition to focus solely on her work using fabric and textiles from the last two decades of her life.

Louise Bourgeois, Spider, 1997. © The Easton Foundation/Licensed by DACS, UK. Photo: Erika Ede, Bilbao

On the 12th February, Beatrix Potter: Drawn to Nature can be found at the V&A until 25th September. A family friendly show in collaboration with the National Trust, it will show visitors how much Potter drew on nature for her inspiration. and life as a scientist and conservationist. On the 24th February Surrealism Beyond Border at Tate Modern (until 29th August) is a major review of the Surrealist movement which aims to show it’s lifespan over 50 years and across many continents. And Whistler’s Woman in White: Joanna Hiffernan is at the Royal Academy from 26th February to the 22nd May and looks at the special relationship which lasted over two decades between Whistler and Hiffernan.

A review of Raphael’s complete career, from painter, architect, draughtsman, archaeologist and poet, is at the National Gallery, 9th April to the 31st July. And finally, one of the biggest blockbusters of the year, Cezanne, opens at Tate Modern, from 6th October to the 12th March 2023 which promises to set the artist in context, looking at his whole career, from ambitious young painter from the South of France to the established Impressionist and beyond.

Paul Cezanne. The Basket of Apples, c. 1893. The Art Institute of Chicago, Helen Birch Bartlett Memorial Collection.
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