Art fraudsters, especially forgers, have a popular appeal akin to Robin Hood.
Just as there are people who are their own worst enemies, so there are books that are their own worst reviews.
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.
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).
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.
Jonathan Cecil is nostalgic for the voices of the Bloomsberries
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.
The Infinity of Lists by Umberto Eco, translated by Alastair McEwen
A postal strike would have been a disaster for Van Gogh.
In July 1967, a young artist named John Nankivell, living in Wantage, plucked up the courage to knock on John Betjeman’s front door, in the same town, to show the poet (whom he had never met) some of his architectural drawings.
Is there anything original left to say about Venice? Probably not, but that doesn’t stop the books from coming, tied in, as they mostly now are, with a television series.