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.

The Courtauld quizzers come a cropper

After a solid run on University Challenge, the Courtauld team met its match in Jesus College, Oxford – and too many questions about art history

19 Mar 2020
Tribuna of the Uffizi (detail; 1772–77), Johann Zoffany. Royal Collection. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Don’t stand so close to me! Art in an age of contagion

Some scenes of art appreciation that wouldn’t pass muster in stricter viewing conditions

7 Mar 2020
Sculpture of Romulus and Remus suckling at a she-wolf in the Musei Capitolini. Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images

Has the tomb of Romulus really been found – or is someone crying wolf?

Claims that the resting place of the legendary founder of Rome has been discovered cause Rakewell to raise an eyebrow

28 Feb 2020
Photo: Leon Neal/Pool/AFP via Getty Images

Star Turner – The Fighting Temeraire, from biscuit tin to banknote

With the new £20 note in circulation, there are now two billion more copies of the much-reproduced painting in existence

22 Feb 2020
The Galerie des Glaces at the Chateau de Versailles, Photo: Myrabella/Wikimedia commons

The Versailles of Wales, Vienna, Hampstead, Belarus…

Every country has its own Versailles, right? Rakewell rounds them up

14 Feb 2020
On the left is Caravaggio’s Boy with a Basket of Fruit. On the right is Sex Education’s Otis Milburn (Asa Butterfield)

Sex Education meets art history

The students of Moordale High have been reimagined as a cast of painted saints and sinners

9 Feb 2020

Michelangelo in the Curva Nord

At the recent Rome derby, the Stadio Olimpico was transformed in the Sistine Chapel (sort of)

31 Jan 2020
The Magna Carta in Salisbury.

The altruism of art theft

An attempt to steal the Magna Carta prompts Rakewell to wonder whether there is such a thing as a public-spirited heist

31 Jan 2020

Sajid Javid in the thick of it

Was the Chancellor of the Exchequer channelling an infamous fictional spin-doctor when he agreed to be interviewed in a Westminster cafe?

25 Jan 2020
K-pop group BTS field questions from Hans Ulrich Obrist at a press conference on 14 January 2019 at the Serpentine in London

Only connect – K-pop beams into the Serpentine Galleries

The Korean boyband BTS is collaborating on a global art project. Rakewell heads down to the Serpentine Galleries to find out why…

14 Jan 2020
Workmen riveting the bases of the Eiffel Tower in place using hydraulic power in c. 1888.

A riveting souvenir of the Eiffel Tower

The monument has been celebrating its 130th birthday by peddling limited edition rivets – yours to own for just €525 apiece!

10 Jan 2020
Claes Bang as Dracula.

The fine art holdings of Claes Bang’s Dracula

A new adaptation of Bram Stoker’s novel has Castle Dracula kitted out with silver, tapestries, and suitably sinister portraits

3 Jan 2020

The Royal Academy goes gonzo

This week the institution elected the first female president in its 251-year history. Its Twitter account seems to be taking an *even* more radical direction

13 Dec 2019
Julia Ormond as Julia and Ben Barnes as Benjamin in Gold Digger.

From Gold Digger to Gossip Girl – meet cutes at the museum

If films and television are anything to go by, it seems the main raison to go to an art gallery is to find a date

7 Dec 2019
Coldplay Perform At The Natural History Museum

Too close to the bone? Coldplay spends a night at the Natural History Museum

The band performed underneath a skeleton in the museum’s great hall last weekend

29 Nov 2019

The finer points of art appreciation – and some blunt speaking – in ‘The Crown’

The Queen and Prince Philip get some art advice from Anthony Blunt in season three of the lavish drama

24 Nov 2019

The tinselly tat of Trafalgar Square

A small alpine village has set up shop outside the National Gallery – are there any parallels with what’s inside the building?

15 Nov 2019
Joe Pesci as Russell Bufalino, who is clearly an art lover, in Martin Scorsese’s The Irishman (2019).

Prop appeal – Martin Scorsese’s neoclassical stylings

A painting ‘in the style of‘ Hubert Robert catches Rakewell’s eye in a still from Scorsese’s new movie, The Irishman

8 Nov 2019
American Red Cross workers hollowing out pumpkins in preparation for a Halloween Dance at Cheltenham Town Hall in 1944.

A bumper crop of arty pumpkins for Halloween

From ancient carvings to contemporary sculpture – a festive harvest of pumpkins in art

30 Oct 2019
Debbie Harry in 1978.

Art of glass – the many faces of Debbie Harry

The Blondie singer made her mark on the New York art scene, as her memoir reveals

25 Oct 2019
Detail of the portrait unveiled at Birmingham Oratory in 2019.

The saintly sight of Cardinal Newman

Rakewell digs out some portraits of John Henry Newman, the first British person to be canonised for nearly 50 years

18 Oct 2019

Cumberbatch the cat artist brings London to a standstill (sort of)

You’ve heard about the Extinction Rebellion protests… but a 19th-century cat artist is also doing his bit to bring London to a standstill

9 Oct 2019
Congo with Desmond Morris in 1957.

Your chance to own a painting by Congo the chimpanzee

Picasso and Miró were fans – now the gifted simian is getting a solo show in London. Plus other arty animals

7 Oct 2019
The museum formerly named the Gemeentemuseum Den Haag. Photo: GAPS

How the museum changed its name

What’s in a new name? For museums it can mean an expensive rebrand that doesn’t stop anyone using the old moniker

4 Oct 2019