The top art for 2012


    Lucian Freud
    His death last July cost the world its greatest living artist. Fortunately, plans were already advanced for this huge survey of his most gripping achievement: his portraits. It looks back on his 60-year career in 100 pictures, from the innocent early likenesses to the fully physical late ones. National Portrait Gallery, WC2, Feb 9-May 27

    David Hockney
    Having been disparaging about the Royal Academy, Hockney has settled in nicely here since his return to Britain. This will be the first show devoted to his spectacularly scaled landscapes. Royal Academy, W1, Jan 21-Apr 9

    Damien Hirst
    It’s wall-to-wall Damien in 2012. The Gagosian Gallery will kick off the celebrations in January with a survey of his spot paintings. In April, there will be new works at the White Cube in Bermondsey. Then, finally, a full career retrospective at Tate Modern.Tate Modern, SE1, Apr 4-Sept 9

    Picasso and Modern British Art
    Picasso was key in persuading British art to grow modern. From Wyndham Lewis to Henry Moore and Hockney, he was inspirational. Tate Britain, SW1, Feb 15-July 15

    Turner Inspired
    Lots of exhibitions will celebrate Turner in 2012, but this look at his obsession with Claude promises to be the most revealing. National Gallery, WC2, Mar 14-June 5

    Turner Monet Twombly
    This continues the celebration of Turner in 2012, and fitting because Cy Twombly was another of the artistic greats who died in 2011. Tate Liverpool, June 22-Oct 28

    Documenta (13)
    It happens only once every five years, so Documenta is always special. The biggest and most testing survey of inter­national contemporary art. Kassel, Germany, June 9-Sept 16

    7th Liverpool Biennial
    Hugely well attended and characterised by inventive commissions, this is Britain’s best biennial. Sept 15-Nov 25

    Metamorphosis: Titian 2012
    Examining Titian’s influence on British culture, this includes ballet performances in Trafalgar Square (see Dance), poetry readings and contemporary art exhibitions.National Gallery, WC2, July 11-Sept 23

    British Design 1948-2012: Innovation in the Modern Age
    This look at the huge achievements of British design since the last London Olympics will feature one iconic creation after another, from the Mini to the mini. V&A, SW7, Mar 31-Aug 12