The South Cloister at Wilton House, designed by James Wyatt in c. 1801.

In the 18th century, collecting antiquities was a curiously creative pursuit

Thomas Herbert’s collection of ancient sculpture at Wilton House was heralded during his lifetime – but it relied on somewhat fanciful premises

30 Jan 2021

Seven music videos that take a cue from art history

Kara Walker’s fountain at Tate Modern plays a starring role in FKA Twigs’ new video – and it’s not the first artwork to have a brush with the charts

27 Jan 2021
Gothic revival? The vaccine queue at Salisbury Cathedral

Six heritage hotspots dishing out Covid vaccines

It’s nigh-on impossible to get a decent dose of culture right now – unless you’re signed up for a jab at a museum

21 Jan 2021
Installation view of 'Russian Avant-Garde at the Museum Ludwig: Original and Fake – Questions, Research, Explanations', with works by or previously attributed to Olga Rozanowa shown side by side.

What a sham! On fakery and the Russian avant-garde

Suspect and bona fide works rub shoulders at the Museum Ludwig in Cologne – in a display the museum presents as an opportunity for close looking

16 Jan 2021
Self-portrait of the Artist Hesitating Between the Arts of Music and Painting (1794), Angelica Kauffman. Nostell Priory, West Yorkshire.

The forgotten fame of Angelica Kauffman

The Swiss artist reinvented history painting from a female perspective. It’s a shame a planned exhibition about her in London has been cancelled

13 Jan 2021
Patricia Highsmith (detail; 1942), Rolf Tietgens.

Queen of suspense – the art of Patricia Highsmith

The novelist’s Ripley thrillers explore deceit like no others – but her candid drawings tell a different story

12 Jan 2021
Anatomical models of the eye and its extrinsic muscles, c. 1755–69, Anna Morandi. Museo di Palazzo Poggi, Bologna

How Bologna pioneered the art of anatomical wax modelling

Palazzo Poggi houses the extraordinary 18th-century creations of a school dedicated to wax modelling – invaluable tools for medical students at the time

9 Jan 2021
Zola on trial (1898), Maurice Feuillet.

Acquisitions of the Month: December 2020

Courtroom sketches from the trials of Alfred Dreyfus and of Émile Zola are among this month’s highlights – along with a major collection of arms and armour

7 Jan 2021

A tribute to Homan Potterton (1946–2020)

As a young museum director, Homan Potterton transformed the National Gallery of Ireland’s collection – but he would resign suddenly, later gaining success as a writer

6 Jan 2021

Rate of return – is France’s commitment to restitution waning?

In a changing political climate, conversations about colonial history – and calls for action – are taking on a new urgency

Arty films and books to look forward to in 2021

From a Netflix flick about the Sutton Hoo dig to a study of women’s self-portraits – the must-see movies and a first reading list for art lovers

4 Jan 2021
David Garrick as Richard III (detail; c. 1745), William Hogarth. Walker Art Gallery.

Bard boy – David Garrick and the cult of Shakespeare

The actor did more than anyone to revive Shakespeare’s reputation in the 18th century – and a plethora of curious wooden relics also played their part

2 Jan 2021
Dante (detail; c. 1448–49), Andrea del Castagno.

The major art anniversaries to look out for in 2021

Plans for exhibitions and events may be up in the air, but the anniversaries they mark are fixed in the calendar

1 Jan 2021
Detail of Two Hills (2020), Annie Morris’s screenprint for Make a Wish UK

Silver linings – artists share their hopeful moments from 2020

Annie Morris, Sunil Gupta, Edmund de Waal and other artists reflect on what’s made them feel a little more positive this year

28 Dec 2020
All Hands on Deck (detail; 2003), Denzil Forrester.

Club classics – on the dance floor with Denzil Forrester

The painter discusses dancehalls, club music and drawing in the dark

26 Dec 2020

Buttered toast and bridge evenings – Summoned by Bells revisited

John Betjeman’s nostalgic verse memoir was well served by its illustrators

24 Dec 2020
The National Assembly Building (Parliament) in Ljubljana.

Concerns rise about cultural freedom in Slovenia

The recent dismissal of two respected museum directors widens the gulf between the ministry of culture and the contemporary arts sector

23 Dec 2020
Ian Jenkins (1953–2020) in the garden at the British School at Athens. Reproduced with the permission of the British School at Athens

‘The Parthenon was but the tip of the iceberg’ – remembering Ian Jenkins (1953–2020)

Brilliant and charismatic, the British Museum curator was dedicated to sharing his passion for ancient Greece

22 Dec 2020
Detail of the Robert Gould Shaw Memorial (1897), Augustus Saint-Gaudens, showing Black soldiers of the 54th Massachusetts Regiment.

Federal agency – how Augustus Saint-Gaudens sculpted the American Civil War

With his monuments to Union statesmen and soldiers, the artist acknowledged the unfinished business of the past

20 Dec 2020

Keeping time – the Tunisian clock monuments that tell of a bygone regime

A decade after the uprisings that led to the downfall of Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, the clocks he loved remain

18 Dec 2020
Untitled (Finlayson Point) (early 1930s), Emily Carr.

Acquisitions of the Month: November 2020

Canadian landscapes by Emily Carr and a major fresco by Tiepolo are among this month’s highlights

15 Dec 2020
Irina Antonova. Courtesy the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts, Moscow

‘The curatorial coups she pulled off are legendary’ – on Irina Antonova (1922–2020)

Whether breaching the Iron Curtain or riding pillion in her eighties, ‘Madame Antonova’ – director of the Pushkin Museum for 52 years – was a force to be reckoned with

14 Dec 2020
Detail of Ikere Palace door and lintel (c. 1910–14), Olowe of Ise, Yoruba peoples, Nigeria. British Museum, London

Naming rights – anonymity and attribution in African art

Historical African artists are rarely named in museums – but we must retrieve what information we can

5 Dec 2020
Buildings at the main entrance to the Toshogu Shrine, Nikko (photo: 2016).

A pilgrimage to the shrines of the shoguns

The sacred mountainside site of Nikko comprises both Buddhist temples and Shinto shrines – many of which have been restored to their 17th-century splendour

30 Nov 2020