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Estorick Collection

39a Canonbury Square, Islington, London N1 2AN

Specialising in modern Italian art, this stimulating little gallery is tucked away in a fine Georgian townhouse just steps from Highbury Corner. The permanent collection, acquired by American author Eric Estorick (1913–93), centres on Futurist masterpieces, including paintings by Giacomo Balla (Hand of the Violinist, 1912), a Modigliani self-portrait and works by de Chirico. But the highlight for many visitors are the still lifes and landscapes by Bologna artist Giorgio Morandi. Half or more of the six cool, tranquil galleries are usually given over to a high-quality temporary exhibition. The building also holds a nice indoor café, serving anything from coffees to full lunches – Italian of course, with daily specials such as lasagne or risotto – and both the café and the small bookshop can be accessed without paying for admission.

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