Lucian Freud

Free of Lucian Freud — Celia Paul’s road to fulfilment

16 November 2019 9:00 am

I was looking the other day at a video of the artist Celia Paul in conversation with the curator of…

Wooden head from southern Nigeria, collected by Northcote W. Thomas in 1910

Lucian Freud insisted a forgery could be as great as the real thing. Was he right?

10 August 2019 9:00 am

Perhaps we should blame Vasari. Ever since the publication of his Lives of the Artists, and to an ever-increasing extent,…

Feasts, flowers and plein-air painting at Benton End

6 July 2019 9:00 am

Cedric Morris is often referred to as an artist-plantsman, and while as a breeder of plants, most particularly of irises,…

The eyes have it: ‘The Zebra’, 1763, by George Stubbs

What makes British art British?

27 April 2019 9:00 am

There’s no avoiding the Britishness of British art. It hits me every time I walk outside and see dappled trees…

‘March’, 1939, by Grant Wood

The joy of prints

19 January 2019 9:00 am

Artists’ prints have been around for almost as long as the printed book. Indeed, they have similar origins in Gutenberg’s…

‘The Orange Chair’, 1944, by Cedric Morris

The artist more fond of flowers and vegetables than people – and who can blame him

28 April 2018 9:00 am

I have occasionally mused that there is plenty of scope for a Tate East Anglia — a pendant on the…

‘Melanie and Me Swimming’, 1978–9, by Michael Andrews

Magnificent paintings – oddly curated: All Too Human reviewed

10 March 2018 9:00 am

In the mid-1940s, Frank Auerbach remarked, the arbiters of taste had decided what was going to happen in British art:…

‘Self-Portrait’, 1880–1, by Paul Cézanne

The most impressive array of work to be seen in London in years: Cézanne’s Portraits reviewed

11 November 2017 9:00 am

The critic and painter Adrian Stokes once remarked on how fortunate Cézanne had been to be bald, ‘considering the wonderful…

‘Landscape Near Kingston, Jamaica’, 1950, by John Minton

A tale of two artists

15 July 2017 9:00 am

Wherever one looked in the arts scene of the 1940s and ’50s, one was likely to encounter the tragicomic figure…

‘Oh god, ma tutto occupato’ (Ach herrje, ma tutto occupato), 2016, by Georg Baselitz

As he approaches 80, the German master Georg Baselitz contemplates the end

21 May 2016 9:00 am

‘In many ways,’ Georg Baselitz muses, ‘I behaved against the grain of the times I grew up in.’ The era…

David Litvinoff: queeny aesthete or street-hustling procurer?

6 February 2016 9:00 am

Even David Litvinoff’s surname was a concoction. It was really Levy. Wanting something ‘more romantic’, he appropriated that of his…

'Lion Hunt', 1861, by Eugène Delacroix

Galleries are getting bigger - but is there enough good art to put in them?

2 January 2016 9:00 am

Until a decade and a half ago, we had no national museum of modern art at all. Indeed, the stuff…

Why did Goya’s sitters put up with his brutal honesty?

10 October 2015 9:00 am

Sometimes, contrary to a widespread suspicion, critics do get it right. On 17 August, 1798 an anonymous contributor to the…

From top left: Lucian Freud, Rudolf Bing, Stefan Zweig, Walter Gropius, Rudolf Laban, Max Born, Kurt Schwitters, Friedrich Hayek, Fritz Busch, Frank Auerbach, Emeric Pressburger, Oskar Kokoschka

German refugees transformed British cultural life - but at a price

3 October 2015 9:00 am

Next week Frank Auerbach will be honoured by the British art establishment with a one-man show at Tate Britain. It’s…

Ravilious in Essex: ‘Two Women in the Garden’, watercolour, 1932

The only art is Essex

29 August 2015 9:00 am

When I went to visit Edward Bawden he vigorously denied that there were any modern painters in Essex. That may…

The artist who only turned into a major painter once he became a homicidal maniac

25 July 2015 9:00 am

Charles Dickens’s description of Cobham Park, Kent, in The Pickwick Papers makes it seem a perfect English landscape. Among its…

Catherine Lampert, 1986

Frank Auerbach: frightened of heights, dogs, driving, swimming — but finding courage through painting

6 June 2015 9:00 am

With a career of more than 60 years so far, Frank Auerbach is undoubtedly one of the big beasts of…

Is Julian Barnes right to think Lucian Freud will survive? Jonathan Meades thinks not

30 May 2015 9:00 am

The subject of the least characteristic essay in this engrossing collection of meditations on painters, painters’ lives, painting and reactions…

Lankily elegant and exquisitely dressed: Peter Watson (right) with Oliver Messel

The Mad Boy, Peter Watson, Cecil Beaton and the limo — by Sofka Zinovieff

23 May 2015 9:00 am

It would not have surprised their friends in the 1930s when Peter Watson had a fling with my grandfather, Robert…

‘Group with Parasols’, c.1904, by John Singer Sargent

Sargent, National Portrait Gallery, review: he was so good he should have been better

21 February 2015 9:00 am

The artist Malcolm Morley once fantasised about a magazine that would be devoted to the practice of painting just as…

‘The Life Room’, 1977–80, by John Wonnacott

The death of the life class

6 December 2014 9:00 am

‘Love of the human form’, writes the painter John Lessore, ‘must be the origin of that peculiar concept, the Life…

The Rose (IV), by Cy Twombly

The Duke of Wellington also invades Christmas art books

22 November 2014 9:00 am

Art books fall naturally into various categories, of which the most common is probably the monograph. Judith Zilczer’s A Way…

Left: The Apostle Simon, 1661. Right: Portrait of a Lady with an Ostrich-Feather Fan, 1658–60

Rembrandt at the National Gallery: the greatest show on earth

25 October 2014 9:00 am

At the opening of Rembrandt: The Late Works at the National Gallery (until 18 January), I met a painter friend…

Who’s in, who’s out: George Bernard O’Neill’s ‘Public Opinion’ depicts a private view of the annual exhibition at the Royal Academy

The age of the starving artist

26 July 2014 9:00 am

What remains of art is art, of course; and what chiefly interests us is the creative talents of a painter…

Taki: our leaders are weak and powerless in the face of religious fanatics

14 December 2013 9:00 am

This Christmas our thoughts need to be with our fellow Christians who are being threatened in the Bible lands. No…