Clare Bucknell is a fellow of All Souls College, Oxford. Her book about poetry anthologies, ‘The Treasuries’, will be published by Head of Zeus in February 2023.

The sentimental side of Angelica Kauffman

In the 18th century, Europe was swept by a trend for art that revealed the inner lives of its subjects – and the Swiss painter encapsulated the ideas of the age

1 Mar 2024
The Three Witches or Weird Sisters

How Henry Fuseli turned poems into paintings

Few 18th-century painters were more enthusiastic about embracing English literature than the Swiss-born artist

28 Nov 2022

Images of strength – Jennifer Higgie’s ‘The Mirror and the Palette’, reviewed

This wide-ranging book explores how women artists used self-portraiture to establish themselves in a man’s world

20 May 2021
Self-portrait in Red (detail; 1915), Anders Zorn. Zornmuseet, Mora

Scandi style – Anders Zorn’s visions of Sweden

The painter, who enjoyed a glittering international career, was as fascinated by high society as he was by Sweden’s rural life

4 Jan 2021
Cromwell and Charles I (detail; 1831), Paul Delaroche.

Cavalier attitudes – the complicated visual legacy of the English Civil War

From memorials to history paintings, responses to the conflict often took telling liberties

30 Sep 2020
Barbara Palmer (née Villiers), Duchess of Cleveland with her son, probably Charles Fitzroy, as the Virgin and Child (c. 1664), Peter Lely. National Portrait Gallery, London

Mischief-making mistresses at the court of Charles II

How the women at the heart of the Restoration court ‘weaponised’ portraits that flaunted their influence over the king

4 Apr 2020
The Humours of an Election, 4: Chairing the Member (detail; 1754–55), William Hogarth.

Works in progress – the turbulent tales of William Hogarth

Things rarely turn out well for the characters in the satirist’s so-called ‘progress’ pieces – rather, they capture the chaos of 18th-century life

23 Oct 2019
The Gleaners (1857), Jean-François Millet. Musée d’Orsay, Paris

Peasant company – Jean-François Millet among the moderns

How the Barbizon painter’s subversive rural scenes inspired artists from Van Gogh to Salvador Dalí

21 Oct 2019

Tureen dreams – an extraordinary collection of delftware comes to light

A collection of Dutch delftware on long-term loan to the Gemeentemuseum den Haag is a feast for the eyes

4 Sep 2019
Mary and Margaret Gainsborough, the Artist’s Daughters (c. 1774), Thomas Gainsborough

The freedom Gainsborough found in painting his family

The artist’s portraits of his household are more spontaneous than his commercial work

15 Jan 2019