Martin Oldham is an independent researcher based in London

Lake Geneva with symmetrical reflections, Ferdinand Hodler

Ferdinand Hodler’s symbolic hold on the Swiss imagination

Geneva’s museums are using the centenary of the artist’s death as an opportunity to rethink how they display their collections

23 Jun 2018
West Gallery with view into Central Court and Alison Wilding's 'Arena', 2000. Leeds Art Gallery.

A revamped Leeds Art Gallery cements the city’s cultural life

Extensive refurbishment has allowed the museum to rethink how its historic building and collection are presented

27 Nov 2017
A Turkish Woman by a Stream, (c. 1907), John Singer Sargent. Victoria and Albert Museum

Sargent’s great escape from society portraits

Freed from the limitations of his studio, Sargent’s sketches speak of the carefree existence of a gentleman of leisure

27 Jul 2017
The Finding of Moses, (1904), Lawrence Alma-Tadema, private collection, wikimedia commons

Alma-Tadema deserves to be loved again

The artist has fallen so far out of critical fashion that his merits are often completely overlooked

13 Jul 2017
Exterior of the National Portrait Gallery, London

Nicholas Cullinan’s grand plan for the National Portrait Gallery

By revitalising London’s NPG, the ambitious director is hoping to make it a ‘truly national gallery for all’

5 Jul 2017
Wedding Dance in the Open Air (1607–14), Pieter Brueghel the Younger. Holburne Museum, Bath. Photo: Dominic Brown

A Bruegel family reunion in Bath

The Holburne Museum reminds us that this entire family is worth celebrating – not just Pieter Bruegel the Elder

13 Apr 2017
The Old Bowling Green, Halsway Court, Somerset (1865), John William North. © The Trustees of the British Museum

The quiet revolution of British watercolours

The British watercolour tradition did not end with the death of Turner

17 Mar 2017

‘We have always been an avant-garde museum’

How do you maintain a museum’s experimental spirit, while putting the permanent collection centre-stage?

21 Jan 2017

Akomfrah and Turner make for a potent mix in Margate

Turner Contemporary reveals how both artists explore man’s struggle in the face of much bigger forces

1 Nov 2016

Capability Brown’s landscapes were designed to be a snob’s paradise

‘A major part of the appeal of his landscapes was that they were out of reach of the nouveau riche’

6 Oct 2016

A closer look at Ingres’ impossible ideals

Oddities and masterpieces abound in Spain’s first exhibition devoted to the French artist

12 Mar 2016

Francis Towne’s long road to recognition

Towne’s watercolours aren’t as ground-breaking as they were once made out to be, but they are definitely good enough to merit a revival

8 Feb 2016

Goya disrupts his own show at the National Gallery

It will surely be a critical and popular success, but there’s something unashamedly conservative about the staging of this show

12 Oct 2015

Ambitious plans for Gainsborough’s birthplace

Can a small museum in a Suffolk market town become a major centre for the study of the artist’s work?

24 Sep 2015

The Taste of Victory: British artists and Waterloo

Painters struggled deal with the bloody reality of the battlefield

17 Jun 2015

Tate Britain: A Poisoned Chalice?

New director will need to boost visitor numbers and restore morale

9 Jun 2015
Front room, David Parr House

The Art of Work: Visiting the David Parr House

Is this remarkable house Cambridge’s best kept secret?

11 May 2015

Horace Walpole’s gaudy gothic fantasy is revived at Strawberry Hill

The private apartments have reopened, but where is all the art?

20 Apr 2015

Honesty or artifice? Self-portraits at Turner Contemporary

Female artists are well represented in this show; a deliberate strategy that prompts a more critical questioning of the genre

3 Feb 2015

Review: The Brueghel Dynasty meets contemporary art

We’re fond of the Brueghels because they are rooted in their own time; so it’s odd that this ‘conversation’ works

24 Oct 2014

Review: ‘Constable: The Making of a Master’ at the V&A

If you thought that you knew John Constable’s art, you are going to be in for something of a surprise

29 Sep 2014

Review: ‘Late Turner’ at Tate Britain

It is not painting that is set free here, but the painter, liberated from the often questionable roles into which he has been conscripted in the name of British art

15 Sep 2014

Review: ‘The Art and Science of Exploration’ at the Queen’s House

A new display of art from Captain Cook’s voyages is compelling, but doesn’t quite tell the whole story

18 Aug 2014