Features

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
The Jantar Mantar observatory, construction of which began in the 1720s under Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh II. Photo: John East

‘These remarkable examples of Mughal technology spoke to an India freed from British rule’

An 18th-century observatory in Delhi has inspired many architects in the post-Independence era

20 Feb 2020

Open access image libraries – a handy list

A round-up of museums and archives that have released high resolution images into the public domain

18 Feb 2020
The Virgin and Child surrounded by the apostles and two angels (mid 15th century), Master of the Amber-Spotted Tunic, Ethiopia. Private collection

The emperor who rooted out magic in medieval Ethiopia

Vivid illuminated manuscripts show how important the cult of the Virgin Mary was to the emperor Zar’a Ya‘eqob

15 Feb 2020
A cardboard presentation case for storing silkworm eggs. State Silk Museum, Tbilisi. Photo: Guram Kapanadze

Sheer delight – at the State Silk Museum in Tbilisi

The world’s most significant collection of silkworm cocoons, and many other marvels of sericulture, can be found in the capital of Georgia

12 Feb 2020
The Skeleton in Armor (detail; 1883), Walter Crane. Musée des Beaux-Arts, Rouen

A Viking-inspired frieze by Walter Crane finds a new home in Rouen

The Musée des Beaux-Arts in the capital of Normandy, where the Vikings once ruled, is the perfect place for this painting of a wandering warrior

11 Feb 2020
Kirk Douglas (1916–2020) as Van Gogh in Vincente Minnelli’s Lust for Life (1956).

When Kirk Douglas played Van Gogh

A celebration of the late actor’s star turn as the tormented artist in Vincente Minnelli’s biopic of 1956

10 Feb 2020
The Seattle Asian Art Museum, designed by Carl F. Gould, which opened in 1933 as the home of the Seattle Art Museum

‘It’s very meaningful to have an Asian art museum in this city’

The Seattle Asian Art Museum reopens with a thorough overhaul of its displays – and a commitment to being open about uncomfortable recent histories

8 Feb 2020
Beethoven with the manuscript for Missa Solemnis (detail; 1820), Joseph Karl Stieler.

How the only portrait Beethoven posed for in his lifetime became a much coveted memento

For the past two centuries, Joseph Karl Stieler’s portrait of the composer has been highly sought after by music lovers

4 Feb 2020
The Trumpeters (c. 1735–40), Nainsukh of Guler.

Acquisitions of the Month: January 2020

A masterpiece of Pahari painting and a pot adorned with poetry are among this month’s highlights

3 Feb 2020
Head with Horns (detail; before 1894), artist unknown. J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles

A closer look at the ‘fake’ Gauguin at the Getty

The wooden horned head is now believed to be by an unknown artist. Questions over its attribution to Gauguin were examined in Apollo in 2009, in an article republished in full here

31 Jan 2020
The new glass roof covering the courtyard of the Princes Czartoryski Museum in Kraków. Photo: Tomasz Markowski; © National Museum in Kraków

A new look for the princely collection that now belongs to the Polish state

The Princes Czartoryski Museum in Kraków has reopened after a decade of controversies and delays

30 Jan 2020

Hester Diamond (1928–2020)

The much-loved art collector has died at the age of 91. She discussed her passion for the Old Masters in Apollo in 2011, in an interview republished in full here

29 Jan 2020
The Egyptian Antiques Seller, (1884), Charles Wilda.

The Victorian collectors who loved art from ancient Egypt

The reunited fragments of a bowl in Bolton Museum can tell us a lot about the longstanding British enthusiasm for ancient Egypt

25 Jan 2020
John Baldessari photographed in 2015.

‘He taught by example’ – a tribute to John Baldessari (1931–2020)

One of the inventors of conceptual art, and a towering figure on the West Coast scene, he was also a dedicated mentor to his students

21 Jan 2020
Installation view of ‘Rosemarie Castoro’ at MAMCO Geneva.

Geneva’s modern art museum displays a refreshingly makeshift spirit

MAMCO’s origins as a collection formed by independent collectors still makes itself felt in interesting ways

20 Jan 2020
L'Âme brisant les liens qui l'attachent à la terre (1821–23), Pierre-Paul Prudhon.

Acquisitions of the Month: December 2019

A late allegory by Pierre-Paul Prud’hon and an early English piece of porcelain are among this month’s highlights

10 Jan 2020
A postcard showing the Kursaal Casino and Music Hall, which was on Alfi Bey Street in the Ezbekiyya district of Cairo.

Life was a cabaret – the Roaring Twenties in Cairo

Most traces of the city’s early 20th-century nightlife have now disappeared. Only the shells of former casinos and theatres hint at this bygone era

6 Jan 2020
The Abduction of Ganymede (detail; 1635), Rembrandt van Rijn.

Haul of shame – the ‘trophy art’ taken from Germany by the Red Army

Their existence is no longer a secret, but the status of many of the works seized after the Second World War remains unclear

6 Jan 2020
The young Susi Korihana Theri swimming, infrared film, Catrimani, Roraima (1972–74), Claudia Andujar.

Casting an eye over the year ahead in photography

A new festival in Melbourne and a survey of Claudia Andujar in Paris are among the events to watch out for in 2020

2 Jan 2020
The Mass at Dordrecht (c. 1650), Aelbert Cuyp. National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.

Art anniversaries to look out for in 2020

From Renaissance painting to Romantic poetry – expect celebrations of Raphael, Piranesi, Wordsworth and more

2 Jan 2020
Within Reach (detail; 2019), Jordan Casteel.

The politics of pregnancy and the future of painting – contemporary art highlights in 2020

Highlights in the year ahead include a spate of shows around the theme of maternity and a survey of recent figurative painting

1 Jan 2020
Michael Clark & Company, I Am Curious, Orange (1988).

Time and motion study – the year ahead in dance

US audiences have new treats in store from Alexei Ratmansky, while in London the Barbican and Sadler’s Wells celebrate the work of Michael Clark and Richard Alston

31 Dec 2019

Arty films and books to look out for in 2020

From The Rock as an art detective to warts-and-all Warhol – the must-see films and a first reading list for art lovers

30 Dec 2019