Exhibitions: Basquiat Boom for Real at the Barbican

‘I get my facts from books, stuff on atomisers, the blues, ethyl alcohol, geese in Egyptian glyphs,’ wrote Jean-Michel Basquiat, the American artist who, in his short life (1960-1988), drew, painted, wrote, made lyrical, vibrant, radical, exciting, colourful, powerful works of art. Basquiat: Boom for Real at the Barbican Gallery takes us on a journey into his world. It reveals a raw energy as fresh today as when Basquiat began creating art,... Read More

Exploring the dark, cute and magical world of Yuko Higuchi

‘Magical Colouring Museum’ is a beautifully-illustrated picture book of sorts – cute, dark, surreal, funny, frightening at times. ‘Cats and Other Creatures’ features 24 stand-alone illustrations. Published by Laurence King, together they explore the imaginative world of the celebrated, cult Tokyo artist Yuko Higuchi. Higuchi is the voice behind the kawaii trend, sketching whimsical illustrations of anthropomorphised characters... Read More

Rolls-Royce introduces the Phantom VIII – a design story

This is the new Rolls-Royce Phantom. In its eighth generation, it is the most luxurious car in the marque’s family, re-imagined to be the most refined and powerful Rolls-Royce motor car. Learn about the exterior and interior design, including ‘the gallery’ – an interesting idea debuting on this car that offers the ultimate chance for self-expression. Read the full story and watch behind-the-scenes footage here. #gallery-3... Read More

House of Essex in picture

This is House of Essex, a fantasy world and a fusion of art and architecture. Overlooking the Stour estuary in north Essex, not so far from London, the building sits amidst Wrabness, awakening this otherwise sleepy village with its fantastically eccentric appearance. There is something of Hansel and Gretel about this collaboration between architect FAT and the Turner Prize-winning artist Grayson Perry for the Living Architecture series. #gallery-4... Read More

Egon Schiele: The Radical Nude

Limbs twisting and twirling, awkward bodies of skinny flesh, taut muscles and angular bone, explicit poses… images that by definition should be sexual but are instead raw, expressive, at times angry and disturbing, yet striking and hypnotic. Egon Schiele: The Radical Nude at the Courtauld Gallery is a terrific, tightly focused exhibition that reveals some of the most radical depictions of the human body created in modern times. It is also the... Read More

Russian Avant-Garde Theatre, War, Revolution, Design

It was a time of change. It was a time of hope. In those first thirty years or so of the twentieth-century the artistic world moved in tandem, and at times with the same pulse as the political movements that fought for radical change. In painting Cézanne and then Picasso and Braque changed the way we looked at surfaces, Vlaminck and Signac, in the footsteps of Van Gogh and Gauguin revolutionised, in their own individual way, our perception of... Read More

Objects of desire: Pavilion Art & Design

It is Frieze Week, as it is come to be known, and London is at the centre if an art-frenzy. There is so much going on that the sheer volume is exhausting, and it is impossible to keep up. It is also becoming increasingly tough to shine in such an art-packed annual schedule. The art world – its collectors, aficionados, hangers on here for the parties alone – have descended on the capital city, and artists and galleries want to be seen,... Read More

Exhibition review: Jim Dine

What would you think of a show where every print was covered with hammers and saws and an almost endless variety of spanners, scissors, tongs, pliers, and pincers? Jim Dine’s A History of Communism at London’s Alan Cristea Gallery offers a complex array of impressions. I came away impressed with the ingenuity, intrigued and a little moved too, but also somewhat uneasy. Let me explain. Dine has used a series of lithographic stones left over... Read More

Campari, the art of advertising

Campari is closely linked to Milan. Come aperitivo time, when the bustling city settles to enjoy a drink or two in celebration of the start of the evening, the distinctive bright, red hue decorates almost every bar table in town. Milan is a true aficionada of its local product. The love affair owes more to just the unique taste of this bitter spirit. It has to do with Davide Campari, the son of Gaspare the liquid’s inventor, and the man who... Read More

Preview: 2014 Venice Architecture Biennale

Next week sees the start of the Venice Architecture Biennale, curated this year by the outspoken Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas. The chosen guiding topic is Fundamentals with all 66 national pavilions exhibiting responding to a theme. Koolhaas’ concern is that over the last century national characteristics in architecture have given way to a more universal language resulting in somewhat homogeneous architecture. At Venice he has asked countries... Read More

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