Paris

Going to the wall: ‘Jane Avril’, 1899, by Henri Toulouse-Lautrec

Lautrec often made the stars in his posters look appalling – but they kept coming back

20 October 2018 9:00 am

You don’t need to be much of a psychologist to understand the trajectory of Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec. Born to aristocratic…

Love is blind, but lust is not; William Boyd’s 15th novel reviewed

6 October 2018 9:00 am

William Boyd’s 15th novel begins well enough. In 1894 Edinburgh, a 24-year-old piano tuner is promoted to the Paris branch…

To reflect on the brilliance of your writing, you had better be sure of its brilliance

6 October 2018 9:00 am

Nominative determinism is the term for that pleasing accord you occasionally find between name and profession: the immigration minister named…

Fantastic beasts and where to find them: ‘Wild Woman with Unicorn’, 1500–10

A brief history of unicorns

22 September 2018 9:00 am

A brief history of unicorns by Laura Freeman

The Pompidou Centre, Paris’s great blemish

22 September 2018 9:00 am

The hideous Pompidou Centre bothers me every time I see it

The view from Paris: ‘Why are Brexiteers so stupid?’

28 July 2018 9:00 am

‘Problème est masculin; solution est féminine,’ says Brigitte, the adored French teacher at the British embassy in Paris. Good way…

‘Never work’: graffiti on the walls of Nanterre University, March 1968

How situationism changed history

14 July 2018 9:00 am

Luke Haines on the situationists – the avant-garde art movement that sparked off the riots and foresaw the future

‘The Battle of the Pyramids’, 1798–9, by François-Louis-Joseph Watteau

The best and most extensive exhibition on Napoleon in three decades

16 June 2018 9:00 am

The Musée de l’Armée at Les Invalides in Paris has a new exhibition that I believe to be the best…

Unplanned mafioso Naples is ‘thrilling’, according to Owen Hatherley. Credit: Getty Images

Are European cities really so much better than our own?

2 June 2018 9:00 am

Early on in his introduction of nearly 60 pages, Owen Hatherley writes: ‘I find the Britain promised by Brexiters quite…

Nancy Mitford in Paris (Hulton Deutsch/Getty)

Diary of a revolution: Paris 1968, through the eyes of Nancy Mitford

5 May 2018 9:00 am

In May 1968, civil unrest, bordering on revolution, exploded on to the streets of Paris. Student protesters and striking workers…

‘Little Girl in a Blue Armchair’, 1878, by Mary Cassatt

No one can beat Mary Cassatt at painting mothers and children

5 May 2018 9:00 am

A lady licking an envelope. An intimate thing. It might be only the bill from the coal-man she’s paying, but…

French Phidias: Auguste Rodin in his workshop in Meudon, c.1910

How Rodin made a Parthenon above Paris

28 April 2018 9:00 am

Rodin never set foot in Athens but he made a Parthenon above Paris, says Laura Freeman

The Charlie Hebdo attacks form a backdrop to a complicated love triangle in C.K. Stead’s latest novel

17 February 2018 9:00 am

There has been much debate recently about what exactly constitutes ‘literary’ fiction. If the term means beguiling, gorgeously crafted novels…

Red panel (1936) by Alexander Caldwell

Alexander Calder’s fine high wire act

11 November 2017 9:00 am

‘Mid-century modern’ is the useful term popularised by Cara Greenberg’s 1984 book of that title. The United States, the civilisation…

‘Pastry Cook of Cagnes’, 1922, by Chaïm Soutine

The painter who devoted himself to turning kitchen-weary men into kings and popes

14 October 2017 9:00 am

Chaïm Soutine turned kitchen-weary men into monarchs and popes, says Laura Freeman

The sew chic embroidery school that teaches haute couture

23 September 2017 9:00 am

Known for its delicate stitching and exquisite beading, Ecole Lesage is the embroidery school to Paris’s leading couture houses

Love rats: Paris’s sentimental struggle with its rodents

9 September 2017 9:00 am

Paris’s sentimental struggle with rodents

Virginie Despentes attempts a fresco of modern French society

29 July 2017 9:00 am

Virginie Despentes remains best known in this country for her 1993 debut novel, Baise-Moi, about two abused young women who…

Nadar ascending aloft in his basket — in this case in his studio, recording the event for mass consumption

The first modern celebrity – Nadar’s life fêted

15 July 2017 9:00 am

Sam Leith considers the breathtaking career of Nadar – the heroic self-publicist who took 19th-century Paris by storm

Up, up and away: ‘Endless Column’, 1937, by Constantin Brancusi

The most celebrated work of modernism that almost nobody has seen

24 June 2017 9:00 am

‘Everything is slow in Romania,’ said our driver Pavel resignedly, and, as it turned out, he was not exaggerating. He…

Teasing the French academy to death

13 May 2017 9:00 am

On 25 February 1980, Roland Barthes, the great French intellectual, was run over by a laundry van in Paris. He…

The charms of old Paris – and the naughtiest girl of the 20th century

25 March 2017 9:00 am

Paris used to be the most self-confident city in the world. Brash, assertive, boastful: Manhattan claimed to be the best.…

The British chefs conquering Paris

25 March 2017 9:00 am

While traditional Parisian restaurants still stew in their century-old jus, young British chefs are showing the way ahead, says Wendell Steavenson

Josette Day and Jean Marias in La Belle et La Bête, one of Cocteau’s most visually stunning films

Jean Cocteau: confessions of an opium addict

7 January 2017 9:00 am

All biography is both an act of homage and a labour of dissection, and all biographers are jealous of their…

I still think Big Bang hurt the City – but it’ll survive even Brexit

29 October 2016 9:00 am

As the 30th anniversary of Big Bang loomed, I found myself back at the scene of my City demise. Ebbgate…