Painting

Why is the smoky, febrile art of Marcelle Hanselaar so little known?

20 February 2021 9:00 am

I first became aware of the work of Marcelle Hanselaar in a mixed exhibition at the Millinery Works in Islington.…

Francis Bacon: king of the self-made myth

13 February 2021 9:00 am

In 1953, Francis Bacon’s friends Lucian Freud and Caroline Blackwood were concerned about the painter’s health. His liver was in…

The rise of bad figurative painting

30 January 2021 9:00 am

Galleries are awash with gimmicky paintings that look like they’ve been designed by algorithm. Dean Kissick on the rise of zombie figuration

Paint in the bloodstream: The Death of Francis Bacon, by Max Porter, reviewed

9 January 2021 9:00 am

Francis Bacon once told the art critic Richard Cork: ‘I certainly hope I’ll go on till I drop dead.’ Max…

On the trail of one of the first artists to paint ordinary things

19 December 2020 9:00 am

The Master of Flémalle was one of the first painters to depict in detail the reality of ordinary things. But who was he? Martin Gayford finds a prime suspect

Antony Gormley on why sculpture is far superior to painting

7 November 2020 9:00 am

In an extract from their book, Antony Gormley tells Martin Gayford that the 3-D will always trump the 2-D

Entertaining – but there's one abomination: National Gallery's Sin reviewed

24 October 2020 9:00 am

Obviously, we’re living through an era of censorious puritanism. Granted, the contemporary creeds are different from those of the 16th…

A high-end car-boot sale of the unconscious: Colnaghi’s Dreamsongs reviewed

17 October 2020 9:00 am

In 1772 the 15-year-old Mozart wrote a one-act opera set, like The Magic Flute, in a dream world. Il sogno…

The mediums who pioneered abstract art

26 September 2020 9:00 am

The mediumistic art of various cranks, crackpots and old dowagers is finally being taken seriously – and about time too, says Laura Gascoigne

The beautiful upside-down world of Georg Baselitz

19 September 2020 9:00 am

The hand is one of the first images to appear in art. There are handprints on the walls of caves…

Imagine being married to Stanley Spencer

5 September 2020 9:00 am

It sometimes rains in Cookham. It rained all day when I visited the Stanley Spencer Gallery to see the exhibition…

Figurative painting is back – but how good is any of it?

8 August 2020 9:00 am

An oxymoron is a clever gambit in an exhibition title. The Whitechapel Gallery’s Radical Figures: Painting in the New Millennium…

I didn’t expect to be so moved – galleries reopen

27 June 2020 9:00 am

I’m in Mayfair and I’m boarding an airplane. Or rather, I’m boarding an approximation of an airplane. In the centre…

From Hogarth to Mardi Gras: the best art podcasts

20 June 2020 9:00 am

If you study History of Art, people generally assume you’re a nice, conscientious, plummy-voiced girl. Sometimes, people are right. It…

How John Constable got masterpiece after masterpiece out of a tiny corner of rural Suffolk

6 June 2020 9:00 am

John Constable’s paintings of a tiny corner of rural Suffolk teach us to see the beauty on our doorstep, says Martin Gayford

Europe's eye-popping first glimpse of the Americas

16 May 2020 9:00 am

The earliest depictions of the Americas were eye-popping, and shaped European art, says Laura Gascoigne

Sumptuous and saucy: Compton Verney's virtual tour of their Cranach show

9 May 2020 9:00 am

‘Naughty little nudes,’ my history of art teacher used to say of Cranach’s Eves and Venuses. Aren’t they just? Coquettish…

William Boyd on the miraculous snaps of boy genius Jacques Henri Lartigue

9 May 2020 9:00 am

William Boyd on the miraculous snaps of boy genius Jacques Henri Lartigue

From Middlemarch to Mickey Mouse: a short history of The Spectator’s books and arts pages

24 April 2020 11:00 pm

The Spectator arts and books pages have spent 10,000 issues identifying the dominant cultural phenomena of the day and being difficult about them, says Richard Bratby

‘I think I’ve found a real paradise’: David Hockney interviewed

24 April 2020 11:00 pm

Martin Gayford talks to David Hockney about life in the Norman countryside under quarantine, how the iPad is better than paint and brush, and why he is not a communist

The life of Artemisia Gentileschi is made for Netflix, but it’s the art that really excites

11 April 2020 9:00 am

The life of Artemisia Gentileschi is made for Netflix, says Laura Freeman, but it’s her art that really excites

Mother nature is finally getting the art she deserves

14 March 2020 9:00 am

Exhibitions about fungi, bugs and trees illustrate the depth, range and vitality of a growing field of art, says Mark Cocker

Strange, sinister and very Belgian: Léon Spilliaert at the Royal Academy reviewed

29 February 2020 9:00 am

The strange and faintly sinister works of the Belgian artist Léon Spilliaert have been compared — not unreasonably — to…

Deeply romantic and wildly sexy: Portrait of a Lady on Fire reviewed

29 February 2020 9:00 am

Céline Sciamma’s Portrait of a Lady on Fire is set on a remote, windswept Brittany island in the late 18th…