Apollo's wandering eye on the art world. Look out for regular posts taking a rakish perspective on art and museum stories. Got a story for Rakewell? Email rakewell@apollomag.com. Follow @Rakewelltweets.

Flower power – is Damien Hirst blooming again at Frieze?

While the artist led collectors down the garden path at Gagosian’s sell-out booth, more pleasing floral arrangements can be found at Frieze Masters

13 Oct 2023

Christie’s is getting into the ghostbusting business

Rakewell is delighted to hear that director Ivan Reitman’s art collection is heading to auction this November, but wonders whether his tastes might have been haunted by his blockbuster hit

6 Oct 2023

Leave it to beavers – if you want to build infrastructure in the UK

The sighting of the first beaver kit born in the London area in more than 400 years is a bright spot in the landscape – and a lesson to policymakers everywhere

29 Sep 2023

How often should anyone think about the Roman empire?

While #romanempire has more than a billion view on TikTok, some of us only have eyes for the TV adaptation of ’I Claudius’ – and regrets about the Roman Republic

24 Sep 2023

How to fast-forward through Guernica

The Reina Sofia has lifted its ban on taking selfies with Picasso’s masterpiece in order, incredibly, to speed up visitor flow

15 Sep 2023

Artwashing really works – just ask Theresa May

Judging by reactions to Saied Dai’s well-received painting of the former prime minister, a good portrait can still work wonders

10 Sep 2023

Are museums realising that the best things happen after dark?

Rakewell applauds the ICA London’s revolutionary new opening hours

1 Sep 2023

How to dress like Jane Austen

The Library of Congress’s Literary Costume Ball has set Rakewell thinking about the pros and cons of taking sartorial inspiration from famous authors

27 Aug 2023

A night to remember at the Eiffel Tower

It has been a monumental week for Paris’s leading tourist attraction. Let us hope recent events have distracted La Dame de Fer from an unhappy matter of the heart

18 Aug 2023

I can’t get no… satisfactory statuary

The Rolling Stones’ Mick Jagger and Keith Richards have been immortalised in bronze, but it leaves a bad taste in Rakewell’s mouth

11 Aug 2023
David Hockney painting Harry Styles

Doing it in Style – when Harry met Hockney

Two national treasures are going tête-à-tête at the National Portrait Gallery, but this isn’t the pop star’s first brush with a museum

4 Aug 2023

X marks the spot? Probably not in the case of Elon Musk

The social media site has had what Musk dubiously dubs an ‘art deco’ rebrand

24 Jul 2023

Ringing the changes – what’s so special about a telephone box?

Historic England has followed Beyonce’s wise words and put a ring on it, as the iconic K8 phone box has been Grade II-listed

21 Jul 2023

What made Grayson Perry show his true colours?

Rakewell has spotted an infamous shade popping up at art world parties

13 Jul 2023

Madonna keeps her feet firmly off the ground

Clues to the popstar’s creative process can be found on her coffee table – in a book of illustrations by John Willie, foot-fetishist extraordinaire

6 Jul 2023

Indiana Jones defies (the UNESCO) convention

Real archaeologists are probably right to regard their famous fictional colleague as a renegade, but he’s a useful reminder of what not to do on a dig

30 Jun 2023

Hell is more compelling than heaven, say scientists

Research proves that viewers linger longest over the torments in Bosch’s Garden of Earthly Delights. What that says about humanity, God only knows.

23 Jun 2023
King Charles sketching

Portrait of the King as a Young Artist

As Charles III’s juvenilia comes to auction, Rakewell’s thoughts turn to other members of the royal family who have displayed artistic tendencies

16 Jun 2023
The Loch Ness Monster

The hunt for the Loch Ness Monster continues

Rakewell isn’t about to quit the city to stake it all on a monster hunt – but there have been some significant sightings in museum collections

9 Jun 2023

The price of nothing and the value of everything

A surprising statement from Nicholas Serota leads Rakewell to reflect on the nature of ‘value’

26 May 2023

How to live like Courtney Love

The grunge goddess seems very comfortable in her celebrity skin these days, if a recent interview is anything to go by

19 May 2023
Actress Olivia de Havilland lying on a bed

The Olivia de Havilland sale deserves to be a soaring success

The actor best known for playing the saintly Melanie Hamilton in ‘Gone with the Wind’ was made of much sterner stuff in real life

12 May 2023

The National Gallery throws its director to the wolves

Guests at the opening of ‘Saint Francis of Assisi’ included two very fetching wolf-dogs. Rakewell regrets not making their acquaintance.

5 May 2023

A surprise pest of honour at the Met Gala

The sensational appearance of a cockroach at this year’s Met Gala leads Rakewell to reflect on other star turns performed by the creepy-crawly

2 May 2023