7 (or so) brilliant things to do in and around Oxford this weekend

7 (or so) brilliant things to do in and around Oxford this weekend

Looking for some inspo on what to do with yourself in Oxford this weekend? Well, look no further because we’ve done the work and pulled together seven or so brilliant things for you to do in and around Oxford this coming weekend - you know, the kind of things worth making time for.

First up though, summer seems to have properly arrived at last. And with it comes rooftop bar openings, sunny park picnics, open-air theatre and Aperol-soaked Saturday afternoons spent hopping between beer gardens.

With midday temperatures forecast to be in the high teens, art lovers can shuttle between pop-up galleries and other amazing venues across Oxford to feast their eyes on works by hundreds of artists, makers and designers as part of Oxfordshire Artweeks.

Or if you prefer just to while away the tedious hours before supper with a meal or a few drinks, you might want to peruse our list of restaurants with outdoor seating areas to find the right setting for you.

Of course, there are always exhibitions and things to see at our iconic museums - The Ashmolean, the Museum of Natural History and Pitt Rivers Museum - and at our smaller, more intimate cultural venues like the North Wall Arts Centre and Modern Art Oxford.

And if you visit the Weston Library on Broad Street, you’ll discover the story of the excavation of Tutankhamun’s tomb through the eyes of the archaeologists on the ground at a new exhibition.

Whatever you get up to, do get out there and enjoy your weekend.

1. Join in the UK’s oldest and biggest artist open studios & pop-up exhibition event

Oxfordshire Artweeks Festivak 2019
When: 07 to 15 May
Where: Venues across Oxford

From painting, photography, textiles, sculpture and ceramics to woodworking, glass art, mosaics and jewellery, feast your eyes on a huge range of creative activities by hundreds of artists, makers and designers in artists’ studios, pop-up galleries and other amazing venues across Oxford in the first week of the festival from 07 to 15 May.

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Discover more: Exhibitions & Displays

2. See shimmering steel sculptures deserving of national celebration

‘Light and Shade’ - Steel and Glass sculpture by Ian Marlow at The Turrill Sculpture Garden, Oxford

7 May to 25 June
Turrill Sculpture Garden, Oxford

As part of Oxfordshire Artweeks, an exhibition by Ian Marlow, a Somerset-based sculptor and member of the Royal Society of Sculptors best known for his bold and dynamic sculptures in stainless steel and glass, is on at the Turrill Sculpture Garden in Oxford’s Summertown. The shimmering steel adapts to the changing light, creating a fluidity of form that sees his sculptures interact with their surroundings.

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Discover more: Exhibitions & Displays

3. Catch a story by a best-selling children’s author live on stage

Gangsta Granny at New Theatre Oxford

11 to 14 May
New Theatre Oxford

It’s Friday night, and Ben knows that means only one thing – staying with Granny! There will be cabbage soup, cabbage pie and cabbage cake and Ben knows one thing for sure – it’s going to be sooooooooo boring! From the acclaimed producers of Horrible Histories comes the amazing story by David Walliams, the UK’s best-selling author for children.

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Discover more: Plays & Drama

4. Celebrate the 40th anniversary of one of the most renowned voices in British music

Tony Hadley at New Theatre Oxford

15 May
New Theatre Oxford

Tony Hadley is one of the most renowned voices in British music. To celebrate four decades since he first released music with his former band Spandau Ballet, the tour, originally planned for 2020, which will see Tony perform with his band The Fabulous TH Band, will call at 36 dates across the country. Tony will perform tracks from across his career both as the voice of Spandau Ballet and as a solo artist.

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Discover more: Concerts & Live Music

5. Explore observations of our natural environment with renewed clarity

Imogen Rigden: Wilderness Bewilderness / Things to do in Oxford this weekend

03 to 21 May
The North Wall Arts Centre

As our horizons narrowed in lockdown, artist’s like Imogen took part in a “Look Outside Project”, documenting observations of the natural world at a time of limited freedom. Her works reference the tangled shapes of seeding plants, commonly undervalued trees, health-giving street plants, the rhythm of bird songs, rain and windstorms, and imagined landscapes safe from human exploitation and destruction.

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6. Join puppeteer Emma Boor as she unpacks some puppet fun

Suitcase Stories at Cornerstone Arts Centre and The Story Museum

Various dates
The Story Museum, Oxford

Get carried away in puppeteer Emma Boor’s luggage of well-loved tales, jam-packed with puppets, music and silliness and to delight young children and their families! Maybe you will help the Three Bears make some porridge or help pull up an Enormous Turnip, or why not make a wish with the Golden Fish? Whatever the story, it will be full of puppetry, play and fun for you and your little one!

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Discover more: The Story Museum, Oxford

7. Visit an exhibition of works by a celebrated 19th-century French artist

Pissarro - Father of Impressionism at the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford

Until 12 June
Ashmolean Museum

Camille Pissarro (1830–1903) is one of the most celebrated artists of nineteenth-century France and a central figure in Impressionism. The Pissarro - Father of Impressionism exhibition at the Ashmolean Museum is a major exhibition that draws on works from the Ashmolean’s collections as well as international loans and spans his entire career.

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Discover more: What’s on at the Ashmolean Museum