Reviews

Monotype #19 (2018), Julie Mehretu.

Julie Mehretu makes her mark at Kettle’s Yard

A series of pared-back monotypes and drawings signals a new phase in the artist’s work

13 Feb 2019
The artist Gabriel von Max photographed in his atelier in 1892. The city of Mannheim acquired his collection of mummies in 1917.

Meet the mummies – cultural ambassadors from beyond the grave

There’s more to these sets of human remains than bandages, amulets and curses

13 Feb 2019
Jeff Koons with his sculpture Gazing Ball (Birdbath) (2013) at the Ashmolean, Oxford in 2019.

In his shiny surfaces, Jeff Koons reflects the vanity of our age

From ancient art to Old Masters, Koons’ engagement with history is only skin deep – and that’s the point

12 Feb 2019
Left: Vase (1884), decorated by Laura A. Fry, Rookwood Pottery. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Right: Vase (c. 1885–89), Hugh C. Robertson, Chelsea Keramic Art Works. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

The art and craft of American pottery

American art ceramics haven’t received as much attention as they deserve, but a major gift to the Met is changing this

11 Feb 2019
The Royal Lion Hunt (detail), 645–640 BC, from the North Palace, Nineveh, Iraq. British Museum, London, Photo: © The Trustees of the British Museum

The Assyrian king who kept on killing lions

There were many ways to ward off danger in ancient Assyria – and some of them were carved into stone

9 Feb 2019
Zawe Ashton and Jake Gyllenhaal in Velvet Buzzsaw.

Art to die for? – Velvet Buzzsaw reviewed

Demonic forces make their presence felt in this horror film set in the art world

8 Feb 2019
Josef Albers: Life and Work by Charles Darwent

How Josef Albers created the modern art school as we know it

A new biography of the Bauhaus artist and teacher shows that his influence can still be felt today

6 Feb 2019
I Hope I'm Loud When I'm Dead (detail of still; 2018), Beatrice Gibson.

Paris, poets and a poodle – Beatrice Gibson at Camden Arts Centre, reviewed

Two new films pay tribute to avant-garde cultural figures, from Gertrude Stein to Pauline Oliveros

5 Feb 2019
Frontispiece and title page to Christina Rossetti, 'Goblin Market and Other Poems (1863), after Dante Gabriel Rossetti.

Christina Rossetti among the Pre-Raphaelites

The Brotherhood loomed large in the poet’s life, but she was careful to carve out her own creative space

4 Feb 2019
Installation view of ‘Bill Viola/Michelangelo: Life Death Rebirth’ at the Royal Academy of Arts, London, 2019.

Pairing Michelangelo with Bill Viola does one of the artists no favours

The Royal Academy offers a rare chance to see some of Michelangelo’s best drawings, but Viola’s videos are something of a distraction

1 Feb 2019
Nose ornament (1st–7th century), Colombia. Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

Jewels that dazzle across time and space

From pre-Colombian ornaments to a McQueen bodysuit, the Met’s jewellery collection is a sight to behold

31 Jan 2019
Portrait of Marsilio Cassotti and his wife Faustina (1523), Lorenzo Lotto

The mysterious masterpieces of Lorenzo Lotto

The Venetian painter was overshadowed by Titian in his day, but his subtle portraits have a very modern appeal

30 Jan 2019
The Labyrinth by Saul Steinberg

The groundbreaking squiggles of Saul Steinberg

Le Corbusier once told the Romanian-American cartoonist that he drew ‘like a king’

29 Jan 2019
Sofas Galore (c. 1980s), Jean Cooke. © The artist's estate, courtesy Piano Nobile

The unsettling domesticity of Jean Cooke

The claustrophobia in this British painter’s work hints at a talent stifled by her better-known artist husband

22 Jan 2019
The Veneration of St Michael (1825–30), Giuseppe Pietro Bagetti. Musei Reali di Torino

Did Italian art ever really take a Romantic turn?

Italian artists have been neglected in histories of the pan-European movement

20 Jan 2019
Bust of Antinous with Greek inscription, (AD 130–138), discovered in Balanea, Syria in 1879. Private collection

The most beautiful boy in the Roman empire

Antinous, favourite of the emperor Hadrian, was commemorated all over the Roman world. He is a more troubling figure today

18 Jan 2019
Jean-Paul Riopelle and Joan Mitchell photographed in their apartment-studio on Rue Frémicourt, Paris in 1963.

‘Joan Mitchell is the real star here’

Pairing the Abstract Expressionist’s work with that of her longtime partner Jean-Paul Riopelle makes it clear she was the greater artist

17 Jan 2019
Mary and Margaret Gainsborough, the Artist’s Daughters (c. 1774), Thomas Gainsborough

The freedom Gainsborough found in painting his family

The artist’s portraits of his household are more spontaneous than his commercial work

15 Jan 2019
Shooting an Elephant and The Leader (2018), Arin Rungjang.

Poetry and pessimism at the 12th Shanghai Biennale

Grand narratives of progress are undermined in a surprisingly understated edition of the Chinese biennial

10 Jan 2019
Portrait of a Woman (1888), William Merritt Chase. Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art, Hartford Connecticut

The modern painters who were mad about Frans Hals

Van Gogh, Whistler, Sargent and Manet were just some of the major artists who made pilgrimages to Haarlem to see Hals’s work

9 Jan 2019
Devi in the Form of Bhadrakali Adored by the Gods (detail; c. 1660–70), folio from a dispersed Tantric Devi series, attributed to the Master of the Early Rasamanjari

Close encounters with the gods in court paintings from north India

Painters at the Pahari courts found new ways to represent the Hindu gods in the 17th and 18th centuries

8 Jan 2019
The Book of Durrow (detail; f. 86r) (c. 700), probably Durrow, Co. Offaly, or Iona. Trinity College Dublin

The cosmopolitan art of Anglo-Saxon England

The British Library demonstrates that Anglo-Saxon culture looked to Europe and beyond

7 Jan 2019
Installation view of ‘Bruce Nauman: Disappearing Acts’ at MoMA PS1, New York, 2018.

The endless inventions of Bruce Nauman

Drawing, video, sculpture and performance – no medium is out of bounds for the titan of American art

4 Jan 2019

How Mantegna and Bellini reshaped the Renaissance

A thrilling survey of the two quattrocento masters highlights their many differences

21 Dec 2018