Thomas Cromwell (detail), (1532–33), Hans Holbein. The Frick Collection, New York.

‘Hilary Mantel brings her characters to life with as much clarity as a Holbein portrait’

The novelist’s Thomas Cromwell trilogy suggestively fills in what art historians can only guess at

23 Apr 2020
A scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of the cord fragment found at Abri du Maras.

String theory – what an ancient cord fragment reveals about the Neanderthal mind

The discovery of the world’s oldest known piece of string shows that our Neanderthal cousins were craftier than is sometimes assumed

22 Apr 2020
Photo: Issouf Sanogo/AFP via Getty Images

It’s high time art businesses beefed up their cybersecurity

Two art lawyers look at the simple steps businesses can take to protect themselves and their clients from online scams

Wilsis (2016), Jaume Plensa, installation view at Yorkshire Sculpture Park.

Shetland cattle and sparkling sculptures – on Yorkshire Sculpture Park in lockdown

The director of programme at YSP outlines the unique challenges – and consolations – of shuttering the site

14 Apr 2020

What now for art businesses? Thoughts from an art lawyer in a time of crisis

What steps can art businesses take to temper the risks they face during the Covid-19 pandemic?

2 Apr 2020
André Malraux, in his role as culture minister, inaugurating an Impressionist exhibition in Paris in 1966.

Has André Malraux’s imaginary museum come into its own?

The French writer and politician is widely credited as the inventor of the ‘virtual’ or ‘imaginary’ museum – but what exactly did he have in mind?

2 Apr 2020
Mirror Improvisation (2005), Joan Jonas.

Dragging out the HDMI cable – how to watch video art at home

Moving-image work seems particularly suited to our increasingly online existences

1 Apr 2020
Michael Sorkin.

‘The most humane, most incisive and most readable writer on architecture of the modern age’ – a tribute to Michael Sorkin

The critic and architect fervently believed that architecture should promote social justice

31 Mar 2020

Free advertising for initiatives to support artists and arts organisations during the Covid-19 pandemic

Apollo is offering free digital advertising for campaigns to support artists or arts organisations during the Covid-19 pandemic

31 Mar 2020
René Goscinny and Albert Uderzo in the late 1970s. Photo: STAFF/AFP via Getty Images

Ave atque vale – all hail the genius of Albert Uderzo’s Asterix

The late artist’s creations are magically expressive, the perfect accompaniment to Goscinny’s witty text. Getafix quick!

30 Mar 2020
Illustration by Leon Edler

Has LACMA lost its way?

As LACMA moves ahead with plans to demolish its four original buildings, is it time to reassess the project – or is it too late?

30 Mar 2020
The John Madejski Garden at the Victoria and Albert Museum, London.

‘The building is locked but toilets still need to be flushed’ – on closing the V&A

The museum has had to put its building to sleep – its galleries now populated by only security guards and ghosts

27 Mar 2020
Installation view of ‘Titian: Love Desire Death’ at the National Gallery, London.

Six paintings in search of an audience – on Titian’s poesie at the National Gallery

Bringing Titian’s great mythological works together at a time when few people would see them has been a bittersweet experience – but the paintings offer some consolation

26 Mar 2020
Right: portrait of Samuel Pepys (detail) (1689), Godfrey Kneller, National Maritime Museum, London. Wikimedia Commons (public domain); right: portrait of John Evelyn (detail) (n.d.), studio of Godfrey Kneller. Private collection. Wikimedia Commons (public domain)

‘Whole streets in the City were shuttered’ – London during the devastating plague of 1665

That we know so much about the day-to-day reality of the Great Plague of London is down to the diaries of John Evelyn and Samuel Pepys

24 Mar 2020
Fiona MacCarthy. Courtesy Faber & Faber

‘She refused to allow moral disgust to cancel admiration’ – a tribute to Fiona MacCarthy

The biographer’s revelations about Eric Gill were delivered with calm objectivity – a quality that made her a superb observer of extraordinary lives, her own included

24 Mar 2020
Sol LeWitt’s Four-Sided Pyramid in the National Gallery of Art’s sculpture garden, photographed in 1999.

Guidance and gratitude – on cultural leadership in uncertain times

The director of the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., on the challenges of steering the institution and looking after its staff during the Covid-19 crisis

20 Mar 2020
A Lady Writing (detail; c. 1665), Johannes Vermeer. National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.

Staying the distance – on museums and the art world in a time of crisis

We’ll need to find ways to be together while alone during the coming weeks and months

19 Mar 2020
The National Museum of Contemporary Art (EMST) Athens.

The brief end to the long wait for the National Museum of Contemporary Art in Athens

After two decades of delays, the museum finally opened its doors at the end of February. Now, like so many others, it has had to shut again

19 Mar 2020
A police officer standing guard in St Peter’s Square.

‘Rome without people isn’t really Rome at all’ – notes from a city under quarantine

With the whole of Italy in lockdown, the streets of Rome are empty – and the city without visitors has a strange and confusing atmosphere

11 Mar 2020

‘Now is the time to be smart’ – the Pinacoteca di Brera in a time of lockdown

Its doors may be closed, but Milan’s greatest gallery will find ways to keep working for the quarantined city, says director James Bradburne

8 Mar 2020
Mudras (detail; 1974), Ulay.

‘His work was his life, and vice versa’ – a tribute to Ulay (1943–2020)

The German-born artist never stopped reinventing himself – from his gender-bending self-portraits to a film about living with cancer

4 Mar 2020
Russian artist and activist Pyotr Pavlensky during a press interview in Paris on February 22, 2020. Photo by MARTIN BUREAU/AFP via Getty Images

What is Pyotr Pavlensky playing at?

There is no shortage of theories about why the Russian artist leaked a sex tape that made a French politician drop out of the mayoral race in Paris

Illustration: David Biskup

Have art prizes had their day?

The decision to split the Turner Prize caused quite a stir – do such gestures undermine art prizes or open up new ways of judging contemporary art?

24 Feb 2020
Red-on-buff plate with a bird holding a fish in its beak, c. 900–1150, Sacaton, Arizona. Arizona State Museum

The ancient heritage at risk from Trump’s border wall

With ‘controlled blasting’ underway in a national monument area in Arizona, cultural sites and their attendant artefacts may be lost forever

20 Feb 2020