Reviews

Breaking the mould – the women who rewrote the rules of sculpture

In the decades after the Second World War, female artists chafed at the strictures of abstraction and began expressing their gender through their work

19 Feb 2024

The bric-a-brac brilliance of Gillian Lowndes

An exhibition of the late ceramicist’s creations features only 11 works, but open-minded viewers will find plenty to delight in

16 Feb 2024

Art of the blue – the chilly iconoclasm of Rayyane Tabet

The Lebanese artist’s new installation cleverly undermines the utopian ambitions of the architecture that surrounds it

16 Feb 2024

How cuteness conquered the world

An aww-inspiring exhibition explores adorability through the ages, and suggests it can be subversive as well as sweet

14 Feb 2024

The Impressionists who put pastel to paper

As an exhibition at the Royal Academy shows, the Impressionists were never more immediate or intimate than in their drawings

12 Feb 2024

Josephine Baker, agent provocateur

The American star and sometime spy was more than capable of defining her own image, as an exhibition in Berlin makes clear

8 Feb 2024

States of awareness – experimental art from the Eastern bloc

Artists in the Soviet satellite states often adopted the forms and techniques of mass surveillance to mordant effect

2 Feb 2024

From Africa to Byzantium, and back again

Trade and cultural exchange meant that the iconographical traditions of East Africa and Byzantium had much in common

2 Feb 2024

Pride and prejudice in 19th-century France

Depictions of lions by leading lights of the Romantic movement and more Academic types, reveal humanity’s dark side,

2 Feb 2024

The artists who made it in London against the odds

Making a living in the capital has always been a challenge for creative types, but British television was once very interested in how they managed

31 Jan 2024

The painter who took a quixotic view of Spain

Ignacio Zuloaga was once as celebrated as Sorolla, but the artist’s searching paintings soon fell out of favour after his death

26 Jan 2024

At the Fondazione Prada, folding screens divide and totally rule

From pieces of furniture to works of conceptual art, an exhibition in Milan reveals that folding screens are functional, adaptable and always divisive

26 Jan 2024

Shore thing – the artists who flourished on the New York waterfront

What did Agnes Martin, Ellsworth Kelly and Lenore Tawney have in common? They all lived cheek by jowl in a wharfside district of Manhattan

22 Jan 2024

Weird Barbies and other unheavenly bodies – Anu Poder at the Muzeum Susch, reviewed

The Estonian artist stretched materials to their limit to create wonderfully distressed and disturbing sculptures

19 Jan 2024

How Harriet Backer worked wonders in Norway

The painter is in no need of rediscovery at home, but her painstaking depictions of everyday life deserve to be better known abroad

16 Jan 2024

Whose imperial majesty? – ‘South Asian Miniature Painting and Britain’ at the MK Gallery, reviewed

When it comes to miniatures, size doesn’t matter, but a show of historic and contemporary works should spark a bigger colonial conversation

12 Jan 2024

What do English country houses tell us about the state of the nation?

Stephanie Barczewski’s book considers how stately homes have evolved according to the needs of their owners and wider changes in society

11 Jan 2024

Rocks of all ages: a guide to collecting marble, reviewed

Jan Christian Sepp’s guide to the visual and geological properties of marble will whet the appetite of the modern readers too

9 Jan 2024

How the Bauhaus exiles shaped a new urban landscape

The westward spread of modernist design between the wars was shaped by the migrant experience

3 Jan 2024

The fearless gaze of Agnès Varda

An exhibition at the Cinémathèque française doesn’t shy away from the film-maker’s political side

2 Jan 2024

Breath of fresh air – Gerhard Richter in the Alps

Three exhibitions in the Engadin Valley explore how the Swiss mountains have inspired some of the painter’s most playful work

21 Dec 2023

The changing face of beauty through the ages

The Wellcome Collection’s sprawling show has a lot in common with a busy department store and proves that the beauty industry can be an exhausting business

15 Dec 2023

The repeat performances of Robert Ryman

The artist painted countless variations of a white square, but repetitive strain was never really an issue

8 Dec 2023

The sacred heart of Notre-Dame

The cathedral’s glittering 19th-century reliquaries are among the treasures that have taken up temporary residence at the Louvre