Author: Robert Clark & Skye Sherwin

Publication: The Guardian

Press Date: 21 December 2013

The best exhibitions of 2013

Car-crash frights, spooky disorientations, surreal apparitions and restless nights were just a few of the recurrent themes that threaded through art during 2013. Mike Nelson infiltrated Birmingham's Eastside Projects with an array of blown-out car tyres salvaged from the M6. Almost tastefully composed (uncharacteristally for him), the installation nevertheless resonated with the artist's always enjoyable dystopian gloom. At Derby's QUAD Lindsay Seers presented Monocular4, a video installation that played out in a tin hut and took the audience on a trip into the world of genetics while exploring gestation, siblings and rebirth. You can still catch two of the years' very special highlights as they stretch into 2014. The Leonora Carrington exhibition at the Irish Museum of Modern Art reveals a painter of spectral dreamscapes whose work has, until now, been largely under-recognised. But the shining star of the year has to be everybody's art world darling, the late Louise Bourgeois. There's a selection of her infamous sculptures at the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, while at Edinburgh's Fruitmarket, there's a series of doodly little things simply titled Insomnia Drawings.