Art

Ian Britain reviews two titles on Walter Spies

Ian Britain
25 September 2014

‘Spellbinding’ is an apt word to sum up the effects created by Russian-born German artist Walter Spies in his phantasmagoric, darkly glowing landscapes and figure paintings, particularly those that he fashioned when living in Java and Bali between 1923 and 1941. Tropical luxuriance has other superlative renderers in art – Gauguin, ‘Le Douanier’ Rousseau, D ... More

Peter Rose on Erik Jensen

Peter Rose
23 September 2014
Peter Rose reviews Erik Jensen’s unusual memoir of his relationship with the troubled artist Adam Cullen.

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Colin Golvan on 'Behind the Doors: An Art History from Yuendumu'

Colin Golvan
23 July 2014

The painting of the Yuendumu doors in 1984 by Warlpiri artists, whose country is north-west of Alice Springs, represented an extraordinary moment in Australian art and modern art generally. In the 1980s some Aboriginal elders painted the doors in the Yuendumu School building to prompt students to show respect for their school and as a marker of their culture. It was ... More

Fiona Gruber: For Auld Lang Syne

Fiona Gruber
28 May 2014
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Peter Hill: The fecundity of Lucian Freud

Peter Hill
28 May 2014

He painted Kate Moss naked. The Kray twins threatened to cut off his painting hand over bad gambling debts. He was officially recognised as father to fourteen children by numerous partners, but the unofficial tally could be as high as forty (three were born to different mothers within a few months). He is Lucian Freud, grandson of Sigmund Freud, born in Berlin on 8 ... More

Australia’s tartan army

Fiona Gruber
15 May 2014

I have been looking at the world through tartan frames recently, thanks to the current exhibition ‘For Auld Lang Syne: Images of Scottish Australia from First Fleet to Federation’ and its accompanying catalogue. Actually, to call it a catalogue doesn’t do it justice; its 330 pages ransack dozens of different angles of the Caledonian experience, with essays by ... More

Patrick McCaughey visits the Rijkmuseum

Patrick McCaughey
28 February 2014

The Rijksmuseum used to be the dullest of the major European collections. It looked as though Ursula Hoff had painted all the pictures. An air of dowdiness hung over the massive building and crowded collections where the good and the great indiscriminately mixed in with the mediocre in warren-like galleries with an over-supply of the decorative arts.

After y ... More

Christopher Allen reviews 'Art as Therapy'

Christopher Allen
19 January 2014

Art, in all its diverse manifestations, from storytelling to picture-making, from singing and dancing to poetry, is as distinctive and universal an activity of the human mind as language. It is, in essence, a way of thinking about the world, of shaping experience as it is felt to be and reshaping it as it could be, that long predates the development of rationa ... More

Lee Christofis reviews the new art biography 'Fantasy Modern'

Lee Christofis
19 January 2014

Reading Andrew Montana’s new biography of Loudon Sainthill leaves one imagining how much the artist would have achieved without his lover, amanuensis, and entrepreneur, Harry Tatlock Miller. Lovers for some thirty-four years, they seem destined to achieve remarkable things together. Well into his project Montana realised that he could not tell Sainthill’s ... More

Christopher Allen on Antiquity and the Renaissance

Christopher Allen
28 November 2013

When the intellectuals, writers, and artists of the Renaissance sought a theoretical basis for the new styles they were developing – at a time when the new meant all’antica and the term modern was still coloured by associations with the Middle Ages – they found that ancient sources were relatively abundant in some areas and scarce or non-ex ... More

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