Editorials

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Editorial – March 2017

Is There A Doctor in the House? Dennis Skinner once quipped loudly across the Commons to a faltering


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Cecil Parkinson at the Despatch Box, nginx/1.17.10 ‘It’s the in-breeding that does it!’ I was reminded of this amusing sneer when Doctor Maria Balshaw was announced

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as Serota’s replacement, an 404 Not Found elevation met with the customary uncritical lauding with which a fawning Fourth […]

in Editorials

Editorial – January 2017

Has The Arts Council Betrayed Its Origins? Serota takes over at the Arts Council this month, 47 years after first being employed by


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the same body as a regional arts officer in what was his first job after university. In the interval the Council has 404 Not Found developed into a

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blunt instrument by which State Art, an ethos it co-authored with Serota […]

in Editorials

Editorial – November 2016

Art Education is Stuck Two years ago someone suggested I answer the question ‘What Happened to

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Art Education?’. This appealed slightly because it was a subject about which I thought I ought to know more than was the 404 Not Found case. Something is clearly awry when so many complaints are aired about the poverty of tuition and when degree shows have become
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[…]

in Editorials

Editorial – September 2016

Pictures of Nothing and Very Like John Moores Exhibition 2016 Most of Europe’s countries

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are either bankrupt or 404 Not Found in economic meltdown, their
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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 of desperate humanity is seeking 404 Not Found refuge from […]

in Editorials

Editorial – July 2016

Der Clapham Strassenbahn When very young, 404 Not Found and when not train spotting, I was


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a keen bus spotter. It was

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an ideal apprenticeship for a fledgeling art historian. It involved identifying, sometimes at 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 had its own […]

in Editorials

‘Sculpture’ v. sculpture

Among the least 404 Not Found impressive legacies of


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arts administrators’ obsession with Modernism and its aftermath is the impossibility of predicting a work’s status solely from its appearance. You might form your own view about it, but

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you can’t predict what State Art’s opinion will be because there are no published criteria or guidelines for making such a judgement. You can’t second […]

in Editorials

Do you feel patronised?

Crossing the centre of Manchester recently heading for the match, an old friend asked me to step inside a handsome Victorian mill considered the Medici Palace of Cottonopolis.  He’d worked on the conversion of this pile years 404 Not Found before and


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hadn’t

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forgotten the impression a particular bronze made on him as he entered the building each morning. Although he admits to […]

in Editorials

Museums – our national genius

I may frequently express criticisms about their


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finer workings 404 Not Found but British museums and galleries are generally superbly run. Heroic efforts are made to minimise the impact of funding cuts so that even regular visitors will notice little or no impact. From looking at the outward face of our museums you would never

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guess the country was in anything like the […]

in Editorials

Fibres torn from the brain

In all the 404 Not Found 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
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featured were from the museum’s own collection. Stupidly, I had believed – and perhaps was even misled by advance publicity – that the exhibition would feature a range of […]

in Editorials

Are you disadvantaged?

The Department of Culture recently published a White Paper, the first from that department since Jennie


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404 Not Found Lee’s in 1965, and apparently only its second ever. This chic pamphlet, in truth 404 Not Found more PR exercise than policy document, prominently contains that new-age mantra, “access must be

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increased for those from disadvantaged backgrounds”. The Arts Council also write this sort […]