Features

Reflection with Two Children (Self-portrait)

The major art anniversaries to look out for in 2022

The year ahead brings significant anniversaries and, consequently, blockbuster exhibitions for Lucian Freud, Piet Mondrian and Rosa Bonheur

2 Jan 2022

The fantastic beast that took Alice to meet the Mock Turtle

When John Tenniel drew the grumpy Gryphon in ‘Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland’, he may have had a real heraldic monster in mind

1 Jan 2022
Richard Roger in front of the Centre Pompidou in Paris in November 2007.

Richard Rogers was as significant an architect as Lutyens

The architect who created some of the most memorable buildings of the last century and was a major influence on urban policy in Britain has died at the age of 88

21 Dec 2021

The fabulous films of Lotte Reiniger

The German director brought fairy tales to gorgeous, animated life with her silhouette films – the earliest of which is as remarkable now as it was in 1926

18 Dec 2021
The Rocchetta Mattei, begun by Count Cesare Mattei (1809–96) in 1850.

‘The Rocchetta Mattei is Italy’s Hearst Castle’

Max Norman visits the very peculiar home of an eccentric count who tried to derive electricity from vegetables

17 Dec 2021
(n.d.), Louis Wain. Bethlem Museum of the Mind, London.

Louis Wain, the man who drew cats

The artist’s commercial cat illustrations were hugely popular in his lifetime, but his series of psychedelic kitties have attracted rather more serious attention

15 Dec 2021
The Bruiser (detail; 1763), William Hogarth.

Hogarth’s love for his pug was a bone of contention among critics

The artist’s pampered pooch was often seen as an alter ego for the ‘pugnacious’ man himself

Red cabbages and onions (1887), Vincent Van Gogh. Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam.

Can machines do art history?

Art historians may be sceptical about artificial intelligence, but machine learning might enlarge our capacity for observation – and even revive connoisseurship

3 Dec 2021
Vinette Robinson and Stephen Graham in Boiling Point (2021). Image courtesy Vertigo Releasing

How to turn up the heat in a feature film? Make your actors cook in real time

Philip Barantini shot his 90-minute movie about the drama of a busy restaurant service in one take – and it’s nail-biting stuff

30 Nov 2021
A&E, Adolf/Adam & Eva/Eve

Performance anxiety – Paul McCarthy makes his audience incredibly uneasy

The artist’s first performance in a decade was a lot, even for the most ‘open-minded’ onlookers

26 Nov 2021
The new 13-storey MUNCH museum, designed by Estudio Herreros, on the waterfront in Oslo.

In Oslo, the mammoth new Munch museum is a surprisingly joyful affair

The vast waterfront complex is a fitting emblem of the painter’s outsized importance to the city

22 Nov 2021
Watercolor. No. 5 (1942), Raymond Jonson. Crocker Art Museum, Sacramento.

The artists who wanted to rise above it all

The Transcendental Painting Group in New Mexico was sidelined for its esoteric beliefs, but its members are slowly entering the mainstream

20 Nov 2021
The Road Menders (1889), Van Gogh. The Phillips Collection, Washington, D.C.

The museum that introduced America to modern art

As the Phillips Collection in Washington D.C. celebrates its centenary, the museum is also looking firmly to the future

19 Nov 2021
A giant amethyst geode from Uruguay, installed in the Mignone Halls of Gems and Minerals at the American Museum of Natural History, New York. Photo: Timothy A. Clary/AFP via Getty Images

Jewel identity – what can we glean from gems and minerals in museums?

In museums, minerals are both everyday matter and also objects of scientific interest – but they carry more intangible meanings too

18 Nov 2021
A billboard for Balenciaga on a church in Venice in 2017.

The billboards that are turning Venice into an eyesore

Luxury brands are certainly contributing to the conservation of Venice – but massive advertisements on historic buildings are starting to spoil the views

9 Nov 2021
Fyodor Dostoevsky (1872), Vasily Perov. State Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow

Dostoevsky’s distrust of the West ran deep – but so did his love of the Old Masters

The novelist revered Raphael’s Sistine Madonna – and Holbein’s Dead Christ almost induced an epileptic fit

3 Nov 2021
Echo (detail; 1952), Yildiz Moran. Yildiz Moran Archive

Looking for the lost women of modern Turkish art

In Istanbul, an exhibition of works created by women between 1850 and 1950 has made some impressive finds

1 Nov 2021
David Livingstone (1813–71), photographed in 1864 by Thomas Annan.

Missionary position – David Livingstone’s birthplace gets a makeover

It’s not easy to repackage a museum devoted to a Victorian missionary, but the David Livingstone Birthplace Museum has pulled it off

25 Oct 2021
A Bacchanalian Revel before a Term (detail; 1632–33), Nicolas Poussin. The National Gallery

Poussin’s dancers pass the test of time

Time is suspended in Nicolas Poussin’s paintings of dancers who revel in the viewer’s attention

23 Oct 2021

The Aztec origins of John Dee’s famous mirror are quite the mystery

The discovery that the astrologer’s ‘scrying glass’ is made of obsidian from Mexico points to the complex global webs surrounding many Tudor objects

22 Oct 2021
The Museum of Making, formerly Derby Industrial Museum, located on the site of the city's 18th-century silk mill.

Industrial revolutions – at the Museum of Making in Derby

The spirit of innovation and manufacture lives on in the Midlands city – as a redeveloped museum on the site of the old silk mill makes clear

20 Oct 2021
Carla Ecola, director of the Outside Project, lays memorial candles in Trafalgar Square as part of the Museum of Homelessness’s ‘Dying Homeless’ project (Photo: Anthony Luvera)

The streetwise ways of the Museum of Homelessness

From street actions to art exhibitions, the organisation empowers homeless people to tell their own stories

Oxford Botanic Garden in 2021.

Britain’s oldest botanical garden goes back to its roots

Oxford Botanic Garden has played a vital role in the evolution of plant science since it was founded 400 years ago

30 Sep 2021
Penitent Mary Magdalene (c. 1625–26), Artemisia Gentileschi. Private collection

Has a long-lost Artemisia finally come to light?

Painted in around 1625, the Penitent Mary Magdalene inspired a host of copies before disappearing. Now, it has resurfaced in a private collection

29 Sep 2021