Painting

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…

Pyramids of piffle: Tate Britain’s British Baroque reviewed

15 February 2020 9:00 am

British Baroque: it was never going to fly. Les rosbifs emulating the splendour of le Roi Soleil? Pas possible. Still,…

How Jan van Eyck revolutionised painting

7 February 2020 10:00 pm

Jan van Eyck changed the art of picture-making more fundamentally than anyone who has ever lived, says Martin Gayford

The art of pregnancy

1 February 2020 9:00 am

Pregnancy has always been a public spectacle – and as the Foundling Museum’s new exhibition shows, a dangerous one

Why did David Bomberg disappear?

11 January 2020 9:00 am

David Bomberg was only 23 when his first solo exhibition opened in July 1914 at the Chenil Gallery in Chelsea.…

Martin Gayford visits the greatest one-artist show on Earth

21 December 2019 9:00 am

For a good deal of this autumn, I was living in Venice. This wasn’t exactly a holiday, I’d like to…

Meet Congo, the Leonardo of chimps, whose paintings sell for £14,500

21 December 2019 9:00 am

Three million years ago one of our ancestors, Australopithecus africanus, picked up a pebble and took it home to its…

The forgotten masterpieces of Indian art

21 December 2019 9:00 am

As late as the end of the 18th century, only a handful of Europeans had ever seen the legendary Mughal…

To fill a major Tate show requires a huge talent. Dora Maar didn’t have that

14 December 2019 9:00 am

Dora Maar first attracted the attention of Pablo Picasso while playing a rather dangerous game at the celebrated left-bank café…

The pleasures and perils of talking about art on the radio

30 November 2019 9:00 am

‘I like not knowing why I like it,’ declared Fiona Shaw, the actress, about Georgia O’Keeffe’s extraordinary blast of colour,…

Remarkable and imaginative: Fitzwilliam Museum’s The Art of Food reviewed

30 November 2019 9:00 am

Eating makes us anxious. This is a feature of contemporary life: a huge amount of attention is devoted to how…

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…

The beauties of the universe are revealed in the paintings of Pieter de Hooch

19 October 2019 9:00 am

In the early 1660s, Pieter de Hooch was living in an area of what we would now call urban overspill…

‘Self-Portrait with Yellow Christ’, 1890–91, by Paul Gauguin

Pilferer, paedophile and true great: Gauguin Portraits at the National Gallery reviewed

12 October 2019 9:00 am

On 25 November 1895, Camille Pissarro wrote to his son Lucien. He described how he had bumped into his erstwhile…

The rare gifts of Peter Doig

21 September 2019 9:00 am

‘My basic intention,’ the late Patrick Caulfield once told me, ‘is to create some attractive place to be, maybe even…

Why has figurative painting become fashionable again?

7 September 2019 9:00 am

The figure is back. Faces stare, bodies sprawl, fingers swipe, mums clutch, hands loll. The Venice Biennale was full of…

Vanessa Redgrave and Timothy Spall as Mrs Lowry and her son

Why did Mrs Lowry hate her son’s paintings?

31 August 2019 9:00 am

‘I often wonder what artists are for nowadays, what with photography and a thousand and one processes by which you…

‘Flowers’, 1942, by Ivon Hitchens

Whooshing seedlings and squabbling stems: Ivon Hitchens at Pallant House reviewed

31 August 2019 9:00 am

Set down the secateurs, silence the strimmers. Let it grow, let it grow, let it grow. Ivon Hitchens was a…

‘Paean’ (1973) by Bridget Riley

Where are the art fans in Edinburgh? Getting their eyes frazzled by Bridget Riley

17 August 2019 9:00 am

The old observatory on Edinburgh’s Calton Hill may be the most favourably positioned art venue in the world. Recently resurrected…

‘The Ball’ (1899) by Félix Vallotton

No masterpieces but there are beautiful touches: Félix Vallotton at the RA reviewed

6 July 2019 9:00 am

Félix Vallotton (1865–1925) was a member of the Nabis (the Prophets), a problematically loose agglomeration of painters, inspired by Gauguin…

‘Centaur’, 1964, by Paula Rego

Remarkable and powerful – you see her joining the old masters: Paul Rego reviewed

22 June 2019 9:00 am

In 1965 a journalist asked Paula Rego why she painted. ‘To give a face to fear,’ she replied (those were…

Dark masterpiece: ‘Two Figures’, 1953, by Francis Bacon

There is a jewel of a painting at Gagosian’s Francis Bacon show

15 June 2019 9:00 am

‘It is no easier to make a good painting,’ wrote Vincent van Gogh to his brother Theo, than it is…