Features

Photograph taken by Floyd Faxon in c. January 1951 of the living room, with views into the dining room through the north and south archways, of 7065 Hillside Avenue.

Domesticated Duchamp – how photography framed a great modern collection

Photographs show that Walter and Louise Arensberg’s art-filled house in the Hollywood Hills was constantly in flux

(c. 1600–10; detail), Isaac Oliver. Ham House, Surrey.

A mystery in miniature – Isaac Oliver, the Virginia colonists and The Tempest

The subject of a well-known miniature by Isaac Oliver has long been a mystery, but could the painting’s motto offer a clue to its sitter’s identity?

24 Oct 2020
Eye miniature of Victoria, Princess Royal, probably commissioned by Queen Victoria in 1857.

Token gestures – the jewellery of long-distance love

From eye miniatures to lockets of hair, historical love tokens brought people together even when they were apart

22 Oct 2020
Mrs Mary Robinson in the Character of a Nun (c. 1780), John Singleton Copley

Acquisitions of the Month: September 2020

A portrait of an 18th-century comedienne and a long-lost manuscript by Gauguin are among this month’s highlights

12 Oct 2020
Colossal head 4 (1200–900 BC), Olmec, Mexico. Museo de Antropología de Xalapa.

Stone cold masterpieces – the art of the Olmecs

Olmec artists from the Gulf Coast region of Mexico produced some of the most striking sculptures in the ancient Americas

10 Oct 2020
Five Conversations (2019), Lubaina Himid. Hollybush Gardens at Frieze Sculpture 2020.

The shows must go on – what not to miss during Frieze week this year

There are no tents going up in Regent’s Park this year, but there are still plenty of shows worth visiting. Apollo’s editors select their highlights

8 Oct 2020
Pages (scribe Ali ibn Ali al-Bahnasi) from a biography of the

‘I read the beginning and end of thousands of manuscripts’

Digitising an important collection of manuscripts in the Khalidi Library in Old Jerusalem is a painstaking task

5 Oct 2020
Chopin’s last piano, a wing piano manufactured by Ignace Pleyel & Companie, Paris (1848). Fryderyk Chopin Museum, Warsaw

Romance and relics in Chopin’s Warsaw

Although the composer spent most of his life elsewhere, his ghost is ubiquitous in the Polish capital

29 Sep 2020
The east wall of the Salone dei Mesi in Palazzo Schifanoia, Ferrara, showing March, April and May, painted by Francesco del Cossa in 1469–70.

A farewell to boredom – at Palazzo Schifanoia in Ferrara

The 14th-century pleasure palace has reopened after a two-year renovation – and its mysteries are as diverting as ever

25 Sep 2020
Le Rêve (detail) (1888), Édouard Detaille. Musée d’Orsay, Paris.

‘The roll call of artists who donned a uniform in 1870 is remarkable’

The Franco-Prussian war led to lasting political change and left behind a rich visual record

16 Sep 2020
Water Birds (1829), Katsushika Hokusai.

Acquisitions of the Month: August 2020

A trove of newly discovered Hokusai drawings and a 17th-century ‘friendship book’ are among this month’s highlights

10 Sep 2020
Robert Freeman (1936–2019)

The late Robert Freeman was the Beatles’ favourite photographer – and now his entire archive has been stolen

From his portraits of Khrushchev and John Coltrane to celebrated album covers for the Beatles, Freeman’s entire archive was taken just weeks after his death

8 Sep 2020
The Sursock Palace in the aftermath of the 4 August blast. Photo: Gregory Buchakjian

After the blast – at the Sursock Palace and Museum in Beirut

Surveying the damage at this landmark suggests how long and difficult the road to rebuild Beirut – once again – will be

3 Sep 2020
THE END (2020) by Heather Phillipson, installed on the Fourth Plinth in Trafalgar Square, London. Photo: Tolga Akmen/AFP via Getty Images

Sugar high – the fine art of fast food

A super-sized dollop of whipped cream now tops the Fourth Plinth – and there’s plenty more where that came from

1 Sep 2020
The Rothko Chapel, Houston (pre-restoration; opened in 1971).

Leap of faith – how Mark Rothko reimagined religious art for the modern age

For his chapel commission in Houston, the painter engaged with religion on his own terms – and forged a new, modern relevance for sacred art

29 Aug 2020
Agnese Tegon working in the furnace.

Breaking the glass ceiling? Women and the world of Murano

Insular and secretive, the Murano glass industry has historically excluded women – but that may soon change

25 Aug 2020
Desmond Guinness. Photo: Amelia Stein; courtesy Irish Georgian Society

‘An amplitude of personal charm’ – Desmond Guinness (1931–2020)

Desmond Guinness fought against the odds, and often against public opinion, to save Irish Georgian houses – and the nation will be forever in his debt

24 Aug 2020
Mosaic of the Enthroned Christ and the Donor, Theodore Metochites above the entrance to the naos of the Kariye (Chora) Museum, Istanbul.

The week in art news – Kariye Museum in Istanbul to be turned into a mosque

President Erdogan of Turkey today issued a decree to allow the Kariye (Chora) Museum to be used as a mosque.…

21 Aug 2020
Part of the ‘Barbus Müller’ group, photographed at the Musée Barbier-Mueller, Geneva, in 2020.

The mystery of the ‘Barbus Müller’ sculptures

The origin of the ‘Barbus Müller’ figures has puzzled many since these distinctive sculptures surfaced in the 1930s

10 Aug 2020
Self-portrait (1506), Raphael. Gallerie degli Uffizi, Florence

Was Raphael as saintly as they say?

The ‘Prince of Painters’ has been much mythologised by art historians in the 500 years since his death

8 Aug 2020
Greenwood, Mississippi (1973), William Eggleston. Museum of Modern Art, New York. © 2020 Eggleston Artistic Trust

Acquisitions of the Month: July 2020

More than 300 photographs at MoMA and an Aboriginal shield in Adelaide are among this month’s highlights

6 Aug 2020
Niru Ratnam in his new gallery.

‘I was storing crates in my dining room’ – on launching a gallery during lockdown

Setting a brave example wasn’t what Niru Ratnam had in mind when he forged ahead with plans to open his new business during the pandemic

5 Aug 2020
Visitors to the Petit Musée de la Récade inside the Centre for Arts and Culture in Cotonou, Benin, on 17 January 2020.

Private enterprise – the individuals who are taking restitution into their own hands

While museums deliberate about returning objects that were taken from their places of origin without consent, it is easier for individuals to act

1 Aug 2020
After the bulldozers – in the Cairo Necropolis on 21 July 2020. Photo: © Alia Nassar

‘For more than a thousand years this area has been the burial place of the great and the good of Cairo’

A short-sighted view of what counts as cultural heritage has led to the bulldozing of family tombs in the city’s oldest burial site