Van Gogh and Britain at Tate Britain

Van Gogh and Britain at Tate Britain

Judging from the title, Van Gogh and Britain looked as though it would be, on paper, at least, if not exactly padded out, certainly well-upholstered. Although he did a few drawings during his three-year stay in Britain, he never did one painting, and was not really an artist at all...

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Wellington in India at Apsley House

Wellington in India at Apsley House

It is always a treat to visit Apsley House, known more widely as Number One, London. They have a very fine collection of paintings, porcelain, silver and statuary, including no less than four paintings by Velazquez, two by Ribera, a Titian, a Van Dyck and a Goya, as well as...

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The Renaissance Nude at the Sackler Gallery

The Renaissance Nude at the Sackler Gallery

The publicity material surrounding this exhibition uses Bronzino’s portrayal of Saint Sebastian as a rather beautiful young man with a shock of ginger hair, and a red cloak draped over his nude torso, coyly looking out of the frame with a wistful expression, which contains more than a hint of...

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Don McCullin at Tate Britain

Don McCullin at Tate Britain

  There should be a warning before entering the Don McCullin retrospective at Tate Britain, stating, ‘Brace! Brace!’ This extraordinary photographer has covered most major conflicts in the world for the past sixty years, including the Berlin Wall in 1961, Biafra, Cyprus, Republic of Congo and Vietnam, all in the...

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Trial by Laughter at the Richmond Theater

Trial by Laughter at the Richmond Theater

  The problem with this play, and it is a problem, is that it doesn’t know what it is. Is it a comedy, a courtroom drama, a piece of polemic journalism, or a political satire? Laughter may have driven the original rhetoric and William Hone’s own defence two hundred years...

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Review: Vegan Tyne Cheese

Review: Vegan Tyne Cheese

Welcomingly Parisienne, the packaging of this cheese should have been a sign of what was to come. Each cheese medallion beautifully wrapped and placed in a circular box; of the kind made iconic by Brie, Camembert and ‘visit France’ television adverts, you know the one: strategically positioned on a red...

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Pierre Bonnard: The Colour of Memory at Tate Modern

Pierre Bonnard: The Colour of Memory at Tate Modern

  Immerse yourself in the gloriously colourful world of Pierre Bonnard and bask in the warm sunny afternoons on the Côte d’Azur or gaze out of the window at the lush garden from the coolness of the dining room. Sit with him and his family around the kitchen table spread...

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Prototyping in Tokyo at Japan House

Prototyping in Tokyo at Japan House

In the Christmas edition of Private Eye, there is their annual double page Gnome Christmas Giftmart, featuring such indispensable items as a ‘Solar-powered Trouser-press’, which can only be used outside in daylight hours, a ‘Driverless Suitcase,’ and an HS2 StairLift, which can shave up to 10 seconds off your upstairs...

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Ashurbanipal,  King of the World at the British Museum

Ashurbanipal, King of the World at the British Museum

I am Ashurbanipal, King of the World, King of Assyria.                          ” Forget Death and feed life”            ( Ancient Mesopotamian Inscription from Nineveh)   ” I am Ashurbanipal, King of the World, King of Assyria”, claimed Ashurbanipal himself in a cuneiform inscription. It would appear from archaeological  evidence and...

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Alfred Munnings: War Artist, 1918 at the National Army Museum

Alfred Munnings: War Artist, 1918 at the National Army Museum

  Alfred Munnings had more than his share of drama in his long and colourful life, regarded by Augustus John as ‘greater than Stubbs. He made it move, had greater narrative quality and his groupings are better.’ He certainly had colossal painterly skills, a unique palette and, as a rider...

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