Arts feature

Painting with light: a Polaroid shot on vintage film by photographer Alex Cad

The magic of Polaroid – and how I rescued it from oblivion

3 December 2016 9:00 am

Florian Kaps celebrates the magic of Polaroid – and describes how he rescued it from oblivion

Drama queen: Claire Foy as Elizabeth and Matt Smith as Prince Philip in Netflix’s ‘The Crown’

Is it curtains for BBC drama?

26 November 2016 9:00 am

Power is ebbing from the once-mighty BBC drama department to the likes of Netflix. But is it terminal? Neil Armstrong has the inside story

The Elephant House at London Zoo, designed in 1964 by Casson Conder Partnership

Want to understand your animal side? Head to the Wellcome Collection

19 November 2016 9:00 am

We’ll do anything to forget we are animals. Charles Foster hails a forthcoming exhibition that makes us face up to reality

Amusing ourselves to death: Faye Dunaway as Diana Christensen in Sidney Lumet’s ‘Network’

The 1976 film that foretold the rise of Trump, invented reality TV and made suicide a spectacle

12 November 2016 9:00 am

Tanya Gold on the 1976 film that foretold Donald Trump’s presidency

Harry Beck's tube map sketch. Photo: Victoria & Albert Museum © TfL

Maps are as much about art – and lies – as science

29 October 2016 9:00 am

Maps reveal the psychology of their creators as much as they describe topography, says Stephen Bayley

Silhouette of a hand, c.32,000 BC, El Castillo cave, Puente Viesgo, Spain

David Hockney and Martin Gayford on how pictures literally emerged from the shadows

22 October 2016 9:00 am

In an edited extract from their new book, David Hockney and Martin Gayford discuss how pictures emerged from the shadows

Iranian celestial globe (1362-63), brass inlaid with silver

Muslim magic – Islam has always dabbled in the occult

15 October 2016 9:00 am

Islam has always dabbled in the dark arts, says Justin Marozzi

Jamali Maddix, Viceland’s answer to Louis Theroux

Vice TV is a con

8 October 2016 9:00 am

For all its much-vaunted rebel soul, Viceland is just BBC2 in disguise, says Neil Armstrong

‘An indefinite, half attained, unimaginable sublimity ...that fairly froze you to it, till you involuntarily took an oath with yourself to find out what that marvellous painting meant’:
‘Blue Poles’, 1952, by Jackson Pollock

Majestic, exhilarating and overpowering: Royal Academy’s Abstract Expressionism reviewed

1 October 2016 9:00 am

Martin Gayford is dazzled by the scale, majesty and visual power of the Royal Academy’s Abstract Expressionism show

Giuseppe Penone, one of the members of the arte povera school of art, excavating the trunk of a tree

The 20th century's last art movement

24 September 2016 9:00 am

Martin Gayford talks to the men behind arte povera, who took modern art back to the natural world and the past

Money shot: banknote from the time of Kublai Khan, 13th century

From Kublai Khan to Charles Dickens: the birth and death of paper money

10 September 2016 9:00 am

As the Age of the Polymer dawns, Daisy Dunn looks back on the history of the banknote

One of the Maunsell Forts at Red Sands near Whitstable: built during world war two as an anti-aircraft gun tower, it became the home of pirate radio in the 1960s

Estuarial towns are an architectural utopia, says Jonathan Meades

3 September 2016 9:00 am

Estuarial towns are an architectural utopia — and the source of some sublimely weird sights, says Jonathan Meades

At Kingston Lacy, Dorset (right): Rubens’s ‘Portrait of a Noblewoman with a Dwarf’, 1606

The countryside contains enough show-stopping paintings to rival the National Gallery

27 August 2016 9:00 am

Martin Gayford says that summer is the perfect time to view the show-stopping art in Britain’s stately homes, which adds up to an alternative National Gallery

Bob Geldof addresses the March for Europe rally, 2 July 2016

Luvvie anger over Brexit is palpable at Edinburgh – and it’s exposing their true colours

20 August 2016 9:00 am

Luvvie anger over Brexit is palpable. Lloyd Evans ponders the tantrums of the arts crowd

Form, function and confusion: the Design Museum in 1989

How the Design Museum lost its way, by co-founder Stephen Bayley

13 August 2016 9:00 am

London’s Design Museum is on the move. But it lost its way long ago, says co-founder Stephen Bayley

‘Ash Wednesday: 7.00am’, 2004/5, by George Shaw

In defence of suburbia

6 August 2016 9:00 am

The suburbs fuel creativity, says Philip Hensher. So why do writers and artists look down on them?

Astonishing splashes of colour: historiated initial from a gradual, Entry into Jerusalem (c.1410–20), by Cristoforo Cortese

From purple goats to monkeys bottoms – the joy of medieval manuscripts

30 July 2016 9:00 am

From purple goats to monkeys’ bottoms, Laura Freeman on the delights of medieval manuscripts

Igor Stravinsky’s body being carried through Venice to the Basilica of San Zanipolo, where, by papal dispensation, a Russian Orthodox service was held

Southbank’s ‘Belief and Beyond Belief’ series is beyond parody

23 July 2016 9:00 am

A forthcoming ‘festival’ at the Southbank Centre exposes the secular mindset of Britain’s arts establishment, says Damian Thompson

Elsa von Freytag-Loringhoven, multisexual kleptomaniac, scatologist and creator of Duchamp’s ‘Fountain’, c.1920

The woman who really made Duchamp’s ‘Fountain’

16 July 2016 9:00 am

Who really made Marcel Duchamp's 'Fountain'? Stephen Bayley looks back at the early days of the Dada movement a century after it began

Dark arts: William Friedkin working on ‘The Exorcist’, 1973

‘I never thought my films would find a large audience’: William Friedkin interviewed

9 July 2016 9:00 am

William Friedkin tells A.J. Goldmann how Star Wars stopped the Easy Rider generation of American film-makers in its tracks

‘Sausage Shop’, 1951, by Stanley Spencer

In our fondness for his roses we have cut off Stanley Spencer’s thorns

2 July 2016 9:00 am

In our fondness for his roses we have cut off Stanley Spencer’s thorns. It’s time to see beyond the wisteria blossom, says Laura Freeman

Making a stand: Archibald Leitch’s drawing for Goodison Park

From mass spectatorship to mass murder: a history of stadiums

25 June 2016 8:00 am

When it comes to mass spectatorship, we’re still living in the world the Romans made. Tom Wilkinson on the history of stadiums

Out of spirits: ‘Glory be to God’, c.1868, by Georgiana Houghton

A pioneering 19th-century abstract artist is brought back to life at the Courtauld

18 June 2016 9:00 am

Georgiana Houghton’s abstract ‘Spirit Drawings’ were way ahead of their time, says Simon Grant. No wonder the Victorians didn’t get her

An early folly: Rushton Triangular Lodge, Northamptonshire, built in 1597 by Sir Thomas Tresham as a symbol of the Holy Trinity

Let’s celebrate follies – England’s most distinctive contribution to world architecture

11 June 2016 9:00 am

Ruined castles, altars, temples of virtue, alcoves, labyrinths, pagodas: Stephen Bayley celebrates a peculiarly English obsession

Isabelle Huppert, c.1980, New York City

Three hours of vomit, fellatio and menstruation: Isabelle Huppert on Phaedra(s)

4 June 2016 9:00 am

A blushing James Woodall is riveted by Isabelle Huppert’s performance in Phaedra(s)