Van Gogh. Self-Portraits at The Courtauld Gallery was a fabulous assembly of nearly half of the artist’s surviving autobiographical likenesses, specifically 16 from at least 35 in total. They even threw in Van Gogh’s Chair (National Gallery, London) and his portrait of Eugène Boch (Musée d’Orsay, Paris) for good measure. Every encounter was a personalContinue reading “REVIEW | Van Gogh. Self-Portraits – The Courtauld Gallery, London”
In a chapter of Cynthia Freedland’s book, Portraits & Persons, the philosopher proposes that portraits are images of persons that fulfil one or more of the following features: Likenesses Psychological characterisations Proofs of presence or ‘contact’ Manifestations of a person’s ‘essence’ or ‘air’ Such criteria may seem obvious but, in practice, they are particularly difficultContinue reading “Encountering the Past”
Picasso. One mention of this elusive name sparks headlines of paintings selling for millions. But who was he? Beneath the external skin of artistic genius, who exactly was the painter of the enormous Guernica (1937) or the earlier, highly controversial Les Demoiselles d’Avignon (1907)? Who was Pablo Picasso? The National Portrait Gallery’s latest Picasso PortraitsContinue reading “Picasso Portraits – friendships immortalised”
Vienna, also known as the City of Music, was an area where many great composers found their place in musical history, icons such as Mozart, Brahms and Mahler. Theatres and opera houses filled the city with world-class music, attracting tourists and immigrants from across the Empire. During the years of the Austro-Hungarian Empire (1867-1918), ViennaContinue reading “Modern portraiture – the Old and the New Viennese”
Prior to leaving the house, I found out from the National Gallery’s Twitter feed that they were launching the Titian Experience with the Art Fund that afternoon. I decided I would make a small detour to check it out. Alas, when I arrived I had already missed the last public viewing.