Fine artist, but a dirty old man

31 March 2010 12:00 am

I have always been sceptical of those passages in the ‘Ancestry’ chapters of biographies that run something like this: Through his veins coursed the rebellious blood of the Vavasours, blended with a more temperate strain from the Mudge family of Basingstoke.


Life beyond the canvas

24 February 2010 12:00 am

Angela Thirlwell’s previous book was a double biography of William Rossetti (brother to the more famous Dante Gabriel) and his wife Lucy (daughter of the more famous Ford Madox Brown).


A dramatic streak

10 February 2010 12:00 am

Late in the 19th century, archaeologists digging in the Roman Forum discovered a lime kiln.


A dream made concrete

6 January 2010 12:00 am

You are celebrated as the architect of one of the most famous buildings in the world, now in your late eighties and living quietly in your home outside Copenhagen.

Master of accretion

30 December 2009 12:00 am

Frank Auerbach (born 1931) is one of the most interesting artists working in Europe today, a philosophical painter of reality who works and re-works his pictures before he discovers something new, something worth saving.

The king of chiaroscuro

14 December 2009 12:00 am

These days, it is easy to take it for granted that Caravaggio (1571-1610) is the most popular of the old masters, yet it was not ever thus.

Repeat that, repeat

9 December 2009 12:00 am

The Infinity of Lists by Umberto Eco, translated by Alastair McEwen

The optimism of a suicide

9 December 2009 12:00 am

A postal strike would have been a disaster for Van Gogh.

Romantic approaches

4 November 2009 12:00 am

Spectator readers will know that Andrew Lambirth is a romantic, a force for the literary and poetic approach to art criticism, so he is an admirably empathetic guide to Hoyland

Surprising literary ventures

9 September 2009 12:00 am

Miranda the Panda is on the Veranda (1958) by Doris Sanders and Patricia Highsmith

Dilly-dallying romance

22 April 2009 12:00 am

Constable in Love, by Martin Gayford

From worthless to priceless

15 April 2009 12:00 am

The Ultimate Trophy: How Impressionist Painting Conquered the World, by Philip Hook

Shrine of a connoisseur

7 April 2009 12:00 am

Sir John Soane’s Museum, London, by Tim Knox, photographs by Derry Moore


Red Star Over Russia

4 March 2009 12:00 am

Red Star Over Russia, by David King

Horses decline, dogs advance

14 January 2009 12:00 am

The Dog: 5000 Years of the Dog in Art, by Tamsin Pickeral
Dogs: History, Myth, Art, by Catherine Johns
The Horse: A Celebration of Horses in Art, by Rachel and Simon Barnes

The Leap from the Judas Tree

7 January 2009 12:00 am

Stephen Chambers, by Andrew Lambirth


12 December 2008 12:00 am

Photopoetry, by Manuel Alvarez Bravo

A grand overview

12 December 2008 12:00 am

Paintings in Proust, by Eric Karpeles

The new look that never aged

12 December 2008 12:00 am

The Allure of Chanel, by Paul Morand, translated by Euan Cameron