The water’s lovely: art that celebrates bathing – in pictures


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Inspired by “a very long, cold and wet winter”, the Saatchi Yates gallery has curated an exhibition celebrating the joy of bathing, bringing together masters such as Picasso and contemporary artists including Lynette Yiadom-Boakye and Peter Doig. Gallerists Phoebe Saatchi Yates and Arthur Yates say that, historically, bathers were depicted in religious and mythological scenes, but that “Cezanne changed this by showing real people in a vision of Arcadia”. Ever since, artists have approached the theme in myriad ways: “Hockney painted two male lovers embracing in a pool, Picasso, a naked woman on the beach before the invention of the bikini, and now, [Ethiopian artist] Tesfaye Urgessa paints a man with his feet in a blood bath.”

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