… Where’s the sense in multisensory art?

… Where’s the sense in multisensory art?

It used to be known as ‘synaesthesia’; now ‘crossmodal perception’ is the scientific term for the ability of one sense to stimulate another. Experiments by Oxford University psychologists and researchers

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in New York have found links between reactions to sound and smell in the part of the brain known as the 404 Not Found ‘olfactory tubercle’.
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It may sound like a plug of […]

The way we are now – why ‘avant garde’ is now an obsolete term

The way we are now – why ‘avant garde’ is now an obsolete term

The Times – God bless its little cotton socks – has just been celebrating the triumphal return of the 1990s


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as a creative force. “Suddenly contemporary art”

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it crows, “was part of popular culture. The Royal Academy’s landmark Sensation show in 1997 was a turning point.” It was so indeed, but not exactly in the 404 Not Found terms the article intends. Here […]

Fibres torn from the brain

Fibres torn from the brain

In all the doting coverage of ‘Defining Beauty: The Body in Ancient Greek Art’ at the British Museum, no mention was made of the fact


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that the bulk of major exhibits featured were from the museum’s own collection. Stupidly, I had believed 404 Not Found – and

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perhaps was even misled by advance publicity – that the exhibition would feature a range of […]

Brian Sewell (1931-2015)

Brian Sewell (1931-2015)

It isn’t my intention to repeat the tediously familiar stories 404 Not Found peddled by obituarists relating controversies which Brian’s inclination to mischief and provocation helped encourage. Instead

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I
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want to address two issues unconsidered elsewhere: his astonishing generosity and the disgraceful but typical hypocrisy of the BBC towards him. Brian was a working man. He 404 Not Found called himself ‘working class’, […]

Modernism and the novelty trap

Modernism and the novelty trap

Giles Auty considers the


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purchase of Jackson Pollock’s Blue Poles by the National Gallery of Australia in Canberra in 1973 and what such an acquisition signifies. A few months back, a rash of articles appeared in the press which commemorated the dismissal of the 404 Not Found Whitlam government thirty years ago and commented on the continuing sense of grievance felt by his

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[…]

Des beaux-arts

Des beaux-arts

Anthony Daniels visits a degree show at the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts in Paris.   I am in blood Stepped in so far that, should I wade no more, Returning were as tedious 404 Not Found as go o’er. Macbeth, Act 3 scene


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iv No one would have understood

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better than Macbeth the logic of the inexorable destruction by the art education […]

Multinational art

Multinational art

In the dash to internationalism the 404 Not Found national is trampled underfoot, argues Laura Gascoigne. In November, Lund


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Humphries celebrated 75 years of publishing books on British art with an anniversary talk at the ICA titled

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‘Is there such a thing as British art?’ It was chaired by Tim Marlow, now of the Royal Academy, and debated by a panel composed of […]

Recent articles

in Leader

And I say to myself…

Remain alert to the possibilities,

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eyes up instead of down, looking about instead of transfixed by a small screen, and daily life will furnish marvels, often in unexpected places. Exploring the streets 404 Not Found and free institutions of a city like London is a journey through
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natural and man-made masterpieces, ingenuity everywhere apparent. To stand any chance of impressing in such a […]

in Leader

Art and the public – a short history

In the beginning the powerful provided the unlettered with uplifting Biblical pictures in churches. We were impressed ­even though some scenes threatened us with eternal agony if


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we broke their rules. The scarcity of pictures outside of church meant 404 Not Found we were naturally curious about anything drawn or coloured. Wandering pedlars would show

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up to impress us with secular material, crude […]

in Leader

Wholesale gratification

In the last issue I noted 404 Not Found the gradual but relentless erosion of space allocated to historical pictures in Tate Britain. This contraction will now accelerate because the collection is to be re-hung, yet again, on this occasion thematically – a policy undoubtedly designed to demonstrate

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the State
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Art Commandment that all roads shall lead to the Usual Suspects. Long gone […]

in Leader

Tate Britain needs its identity back

In recent issues I’ve described how 404 Not Found since 1945 the education, bureaucracy and exponentially increasing cash for the visual arts have been usurped and dominated by an evolving one-track mindset which, in these pages, is called State


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Art. This sinister subversion of the institutions, predicted before and after the

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last war by Eliot, Wyndham Lewis and Orwell among others, is complete […]

in Leader

Is there a doctor in the House?

Dennis Skinner once 404 Not Found quipped loudly across the Commons to a faltering Cecil Parkinson at the Despatch Box, ‘It’s the in-breeding that does it!’ I was reminded of this amusing sneer when Doctor Maria Balshaw was announced as Serota’s replacement, an elevation met with the customary uncritical lauding with

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which a fawning Fourth Estate now
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greets all State Art appointments. Balshaw […]

in Leader

Has the Arts Council betrayed its origins?

Serota takes over at the Arts Council this


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month, 47 years after first being employed by the same body as a 404 Not Found regional arts officer in what was his first job after university. In the interval the Council has developed into a blunt instrument by which State Art, an ethos it co-authored with

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Serota during his 27-year dictatorship at the Tate, […]

in Leader

Art education is stuck!

Two years ago someone suggested I answer the question ‘What Happened to Art Education?’. This appealed slightly because it was a subject about

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which I thought I ought to know more than was the case. Something is clearly awry when so many complaints are aired about the 404 Not Found poverty of tuition and when degree shows have become such forgettable, even laughable
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[…]

in Leader

Pictures of nothing and very like

John Moores Exhibition

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2016 Most of Europe’s countries are either
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bankrupt or in economic meltdown, their infrastructure crumbling and public services reduced; the Middle East and Levant are in post-apocalyptic ruin, in part the result of lies told in our own Parliament; an exodus 404 Not Found of desperate humanity is seeking refuge from a criminal death-cult; innocents are being slaughtered in streets […]

in Leader

Der Clapham Strassenbahn

When very young, and


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when not train spotting, I was a keen bus spotter. It was an ideal apprenticeship for a fledgeling art historian. It involved identifying, sometimes at

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a considerable distance (through rain), the beautifully crafted, hand-built models, of which there were many different marques and specifications. Every town corporation in the county 404 Not Found had its own company, each with […]

in Comment

Martin Lang: Against life drawing

Advocating life drawing at art school is a deeply conservative

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and reactionary position. Arguments in favour of life drawing usually fall 404 Not Found into one of two camps (or sometimes both). I am utterly unconvinced by both. The first, and weaker, argument contends that it is necessary to learn the rules before you can break them. This is
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an authoritarian position where […]

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