tue 23/04/2019

Royal Academy

Degas and the Ballet: Picturing Movement, Royal Academy

A beguiling shadow play greets and enchants on arrival: the silhouettes of three ballerinas, each performing an arabesque, are cast upon the wall as you enter. The effect, as their softly delineated forms dip and slowly rotate, is mesmerising. It’s...

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theartsdesk's Chairman honoured by Royal Academy

Sir John Tusa, chairman of theartsdesk, former managing director of the BBC World Service and Barbican Centre, has been made an Honorary Fellow of the Royal Academy today. Two non-artists a year are chosen by the Royal Academy of Arts in...

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Ivor Abrahams, Mystery and Imagination, Royal Academy

Ivor Abrahams' 'A Dream Within a Dream' has a Magritte-ish sense of illusionism

In this month of royal weddings, endless bank holidays and (possibly?) equally endless good weather, it can be hard to focus, so perhaps this is the perfect opportunity to catch up with a show that nearly got away. Instead of winsome blockbusters...

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Antoine Watteau, Royal Academy and Wallace Collection

As a young man searching for a way to make a living in Paris, Antoine Watteau briefly tried his hand at engraving fashion plates. He seems to have had a natural affinity for cloth and drew its folds and creases with such apparent ease that you can...

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Pioneering Painters: The Glasgow Boys 1880-1900, Royal Academy

James Guthrie, 'A Hind's Daughter', 1883

If you'd been a painter at the time of Impressionism, what would you have done? Rushed to Paris to become a disciple of Manet or Monet? Taken the Symbolist route with Odilon Redon or headed to Brittany to whoop it up with Gauguin and co? No, the...

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Thomas Lawrence: Regency Power and Brilliance, National Portrait Gallery

Thomas Lawrence was a child prodigy; from the age of 11 he supported his family by making pastel drawings of the fashionable elite who spent the season in Bath. The next step for an aspiring young artist was to learn how to paint in oils and...

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Sargent and the Sea, Royal Academy

There’s a little-known side to the 19th-century American artist John Singer Sargent, and it is as far removed from the razzle-dazzle of his glittering career as a high-society portraitist as you can imagine. The artist who was famously described by...

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Art Gallery: Terry Setch - Lavernock

Terry Setch: The most underrated artist in Britain? Pictured: 'Viewing Lavernock Point', 2009

Terry Setch can lay claim to being the most underrated artist in Britain. Not that the Cardiff-based Londoner has been entirely neglected: acclaimed as one of Britain’s most powerful painters by his contemporary John Hoyland, he’s been garlanded...

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The Real Van Gogh: The Artist and His Letters, Royal Academy

This exhibition may claim to reveal the real Van Gogh through his letters, but what of the Sunflowers, the Self-Portrait With Bandaged Ear, oh, and Starry Night, with its roiling night sky and dark, mysterious cypress tree? What even of the dizzying...

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Art 2010: Looking Ahead

Van Gogh's 'Hospital at Saint Rémy', 1889: 'the first major Van Gogh exhibition in London for 40 years could break all attendance records'

2010 begins with a worldbeating blockbuster capable of breaking all attendance records – and it ends with another. It’s more than 40 years since Britain saw a major exhibition of the work of Vincent van Gogh; 40 years in which the tormented Dutch...

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Earth: Art of the Changing World, Royal Academy

Antony Gormley's 'Amazonian Field' (1992)

There was a time, not long ago in fact, when contemporary art could seem all too wrapped up in its own juvenile cleverness. It was all about being ironic and irreverent. Certainly a lot of it was achingly self-referential. But we eventually got fed...

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theartsdesk Q&A: Artist Anish Kapoor

The sculptor Anish Kapoor (b. 1954), RA, CBE, won the Turner Prize in 1990. His public works are characterised by their gigantic scale and ambition. In the UK he is probably best known for Marsyas (2002), the viscerally red “ear trumpet” that...

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