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The Independent Recommends: The Five Best Shows

Charlotte Salomon Royal Academy

"Life? Or Theatre?", Salomon's life in pictures. Her 405 raw gouaches tell the story of the German Jewish girl's haste before Auschwitz - an expressionistic operetta in three colours. To 10 Jan

Grinling Gibbons

Victoria & Albert Museum

Fruit, flowers and foliage - the best chisel-work of the great 17th- century English woodcarver, who made intricacy and the abundance of nature his trademark. To 24 Jan

Chris Ofili

Whitworth Gallery, Manchester

This 1998 Turner Prize-winner (right) is an upbeat original, his surfaces dense and decorative, with swirls of dots, Afros and black icons, and incorporating elephant dung. To 24 Jan

Goya: The Disparates

Maidstone Museum & Art Gallery

Goya was deaf, ill and in his seventies when he produced his last series of etchings. Mysterious in intention, it is a void world: life is folly, men fly off on wings into darkness. To 23 Jan

Edward Burne-Jones

Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery

Centenary exhibition gathers together many favourites illustrating Burne- Jones's romantic and medievalist nether world. To 17 Jan