Venice with Turner

Like Canaletto before him, and Monet after him, J M W Turner (1775-1851) was intrigued and beguiled by Venice – the magical play of light and water, glimmering reflections of wedding cake palaces in the waters of the canals and the lagoon, the crumbling majesty of the buildings, the backstreets and alleys

French Impressions at the British Museum

  The British Museum’s new French Impressions show was several floors up in room 90, around the back of the museum. I’ve become quite accustomed to coming here for the BM’s print shows, for, for one thing, the BM benefits from an impressive print archive – admired the world over. The last exhibition I attended here,…

Over the Top with Everything They’d Got: British Baroque at Tate Britain

The new show at Tate Britain, British Baroque: Power and Illusion starts in another epoch when our relationship with Europe was a tad strained, let us say, and ends at the point when a German prince who spoke not a word of English was invited – if not begged – to take over the English throne. You’d almost think Tate Britain had timed this show deliberately.

Rencontre avec France Mitrofanoff

Depuis ses débuts dans les années 70, France Mitrofanoff n’a cessé de peindre. D’abord inspirée par le mouvement Cobra, avec ses créatures étranges, elle s’en dégage pour peindre dès Villes, constructions chaotiques où se cachent les habitants, ombres dissimulées derrière les murs. Plus récemment elle a porté son regard sur la nature, en particulier les arbres….

Interview with artist France Mitrofanoff

  Having commenced her career in the 1970s, French artist, France Mitrofanoff, has a vast body of work behind her. Over the years she has tackled many themes: the monster, urban living, alienation and reconstruction. In the past decade she has turned away from the city and has focussed on the cosmos and nature. Her star-studded…

My Favourite Things : Tolstoy’s ‘War and Peace’

Battle of Moscow (Borodino) 7th Sept 1812 by Louis-François Lejeune   Christmas is nearing and every year I find myself irritable and exhausted and walking over to my bookshelves for literary solace. Dancing over rows of black paperwork classics, my fingers slow over my favoured volumes, all epics. Worlds of past existence inhabit my weighty…

Inspired by the East at the British Museum

    Young Woman Reading 1880 by Osman Hamdi Bey Reading the British Museum press release of Inspired by the East: How the Islamic World Influenced Western Art, I was preparing myself for a big show. The exhibition was promoted as “Covering five centuries of artistic interaction”, and since it was a paying show for the…

Into the Night at the Barbican

Shadow Theatre at Le Chat Noir, Paris.  I always look forward to the Barbican Gallery’s exhibitions. Theme-based with enticing titles, they always manage to capture the imagination. The last show I covered there, entitled Art, Intimacy and the Avant-Garde (see here LOVE IN A CREATIVE CLIMATE) in January of this year, had been riveting. With the…

‘Rembrandt’s Light’ lights up Dulwich

  A new show has opened for autumn at the Dulwich Picture Gallery. It’s called Rembrandt’s Light. It’s intelligent, empathetic, surprising and at one point breathtaking, and I urge you all to go and see it as soon as possible. Dulwich, the UK’s earliest purpose-built public picture gallery (it was founded in 1811), was designed…

Kollwitz’s War and Grief at the British Museum

‘Woman with Dead Child, 1903. Käthe Kollwitz (1867-1945)   Käthe Kollwitz, née Schmidt, is not a name I had come across in the art world until the British Museum’s show.  Born in 1867, in Königsberg, East Prussia, Kollwitz established herself as a leading, influential graphic artist by the time the First World War came about….