sun 14/07/2024

Visual Arts Reviews

William Blake, Tate Britain - sympathy for the rebel

Katherine Waters

Poor Satan. Adam and Eve are loved-up, snogging on a flowery hillock and all he’s got for company is a snake — an extension of himself no less, and where’s the fun in monologues? Poor, poor Satan. He’s a hunk too, if you don’t mind blue. Coiffed hair and toned arms with a sexy sky slouch. Ever seen such a lovely lounger? Ever seen such a mournful moue? He’s angel worthy of our pity, even if he is fallen.

Read more...

Van Gogh’s Inner Circle, Noordbrabants Museum review - the man behind the art

Katherine Waters

Vincent van Gogh (b. 1853) could be difficult, truculent and unconventional. He battled with mental illness and wrestled with questions of religion throughout his life. But on good form he was personable. He was said to be an excellent imitator with a wry sense of humour, and was a loyal (if often fierce) friend and family relation.

Read more...

Peter Doig, Michael Werner review - ambiguous and excellent

Katherine Waters

There are two moons in Night Bathers, 2019 (pictured below) One is set in the sky, a great soupy plate with a greenish fringe creating an ugly smear of white across the night. The other is a treacherously hazy rectangle, floating like a cloud above a reclining bather — so inexplicable it could double as a cataract. The latter is, perhaps, a reflection of the former, but at a surreal remove — no reflection looks like that, no reflected light would fall there.

Read more...

Tim Walker: Wonderful Things, V&A review - a bracing full-body immersion

Florence Hallett

If leafing through the pages of Vogue is a soothing balm, Wonderful Things is a bracing full-body immersion.

Read more...

Artists in Amsterdam, Dulwich Picture Gallery review - a slight but evocative sketch

Florence Hallett

Done well, a one-room exhibition can be the very best sort, a small selection of paintings allowing the focused exploration of a single topic without the diluting effect of multiple rooms and objects.

Read more...

Edinburgh Festival 2019 reviews: Below the Blanket / Samson Young: Real Music

David Kettle

Below the Blanket ★★★★  

Read more...

Black Sabbath: 50 years, Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery review – not heavy going

Guy Oddy

The well-spring of certain musical genres and hometowns of certain influential musicians have long been a source of civic pride – and a boost to the tourist industry – in many clued-in parts of the world. One only has to think of the co-opting of Bob Marley’s life and influence in attracting tourist dollars to Jamaica or the raising of the Beatles to mythic status – bus tours and all – in Liverpool.

Read more...

Helen Schjerfbeck, Royal Academy review - watchful absences and disappearing people

Katherine Waters

Light creeps under the church door. Entering as a slice of burning white, it softens and blues into the stone interior, seeming to make the walls glow from the inside. Beneath the lintel, a milder slot of sun pours upwards. To the right, a plain column, only half in the composition, supports an arch which merges with the back wall, disappearing against its horizontal plane. The chapel is empty but its stillness feels peopled. Here, absence is watchful.

Read more...

Beuys' Acorns, Bloomberg Arcade London review – not much to look at, but important all the same

Sarah Kent

The City of London is an ecological disaster. Around Bank, Mansion House and Cannon Street there’s scarcely a green leaf to be seen. Glass, steel, concrete and tarmac create an environment that excludes plant life, birds and insects and is detrimental to human health.

Read more...

Yorkshire Sculpture International review - Hepworth and Moore loom large

Florence Hallett

Sculpture is as much a part of Yorkshire as cricket and a decent cup of tea, with the “sculpture triangle”, comprising four prestigious museums and galleries, feeling almost as well-established as the county’s famed rhubarb triangle.

Read more...

Pages

latest in today

Music Reissues Weekly: Atlanta - Hotbed of 70s Soul

Michael Thevis made his money from pornography. In the Seventies, his Atlanta warehouses were stuffed with most of America’s porn. Nationally,...

Visit from an Unknown Woman, Hampstead Theatre review - slim...

Who was Stefan Zweig? It's likely that it's mostly older folk who studied German literature at A-level who have encountered this superb...

Longlegs review - like its titular killer, this summer'...

Apparently when actress Maika Monroe first saw Nicolas Cage in his full Longlegs get-up, her heart-rate skyrocketed to...

Album: Chris Cohen - Paint a Room

Paint a Room is idiosyncratic, but it is an absolute joy. Accessible too. Permeated with a summery vibe, its 10 songs glisten like the...

theartsdesk at the Buxton International Festival - power and...

Buxton International Festival offers one thundering success, one uneasy compromise and one surprisingly enjoyable experience, in its three...

Sleep review - things that go bump in the night

The question Korean director Jason Yu is asking...

Album: Catherine Russell and Sean Mason - My Ideal

Voice and piano.The combination can have a simplicity, a conversational freedom, a rightness...

Fly Me to the Moon review - NASA gets a Madison Avenue makeo...

It’s over 50 years since men last landed on our orbiting space-neighbour, but...

Album: AJ Lee & Blue Summit - City of Glass

In the world of popular music, tangential connections to success are profile-raising. They offer an immediate connection to an artist. It is...