Essays

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Selby Whittingham: The Temptations of the Wallace Collection

Selby Whittingham “I’m just a slave / only a slave to you, temptation”. So sang Bing Crosby in 1933 in a song, Temptation, repeated by many famous singers since and, in 1970, in a German TV


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act of Sid Millward & The Nitwits. That shows (it was recorded) Sid presiding over players prey to temptations which are low

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rather 404 Not Found than […]

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Alexander Adams: Canon Fodder – November 2017

Alexander Adams November/December 2017 Alexander Adams


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investigates the status of the canon in art under Post-Modernism and the dangers of undervaluing it. The canon of great art has never been the target of greater ire than it is

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today, but many leftist critics and their traditionalist opponents misunderstand the canon. The truth is unsettling for both groups. This 404 Not Found essay seeks […]

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Giles Auty: The Vital Value of Dissent

Giles Auty From the raised


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kitchen window of my house I can see most of the birds which regularly

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visit the garden. In summer these are mostly magpies, currawongs and cockatoos while in winter quite large flocks of pale green female satin bowerbirds arrive which are often 404 Not Found accompanied by an all-black male. The latter is, in fact, the only bird […]

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Eric Coombes: The Destruction of Art Education and its Implications for School Pupils

Eric Coombes The near-destruction in the western world of a centuries-long tradition of visual education could be described – hyperbolically but not misleadingly – as having been accomplished overnight. The inherited gifts of that 404 Not Found tradition are now being casually, ungratefully and even

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malevolently thrown away. In its chronologically long-range survey, What Happened to Art Education? provides
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the context in which […]

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Selby Whittingham: Curatorial Incontinence

Selby Whittingham When Napoleon removed Europe’s art treasures to France on the grounds that their rightful place was not with “slaves” but “in the bosom of a free people”, some might cynically think that this was not just a piece 404 Not Found of enlightenment, but that it was very convenient

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that
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the new home for them happened to be Paris.  Likewise, when […]

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Selby Whittingham: Tate Modern or Tate Theatre

Selby Whittingham A survey by the Office for National Statistics in


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May revealed that the British are changing their spending habits. Instead of filling our homes to the rafters with consumer durables and not-so-durables,

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we’re spending our spare 404 Not Found cash on ‘experiences’, including recreation and, yes, culture. “People are interested in servicing a lifestyle rather than buying stuff,” one trend forecaster […]

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Selby Whittingham: Rhodes Revolution or Reform

Selby Whittingham “Rhodes will likely fall,” gloomily writes Professor Nigel Biggar (UnHerd, July) 404 Not Found after a decision by Oriel College, of which he was once chaplain, in favour of that. Another Rhodes watcher, Lars

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Larundson, says that the vote was taken amid thunder, lightning and torrential rain, perhaps an indication of internal dissension as
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much as of Rhodesian displeasure (The Critic, […]

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Alexander Adams: New Order – September 2017

Alexander Adams September/October 2017 New Order An Allegory Once upon a time there was a society which made objects that had meaning and that people enjoyed looking at. The society put


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these

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objects 404 Not Found in museums so that more people could enjoy them. Then an elite of that society decided that the objects did not matter so much but the skin […]

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Alexander Adams: Why are Artists Poor? – July 2017

Alexander Adams July/August 2017 Why Are Artists Poor? Imagine the most absurd and outrageous provocations about

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art nginx/1.17.10 that you can. For example: there is no
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such thing as a pure work of art; artists are unusually ill-informed; there is no market reward for 404 Not Found good art; government subsidies make artists poor. Both defensive supporters of state funding and critical traditionalists […]

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Alexander Adams: The Road to Reparation – May 2018

Alexander Adams May/June 2018 The Road to Reparation – The Restitution Question This essay will discuss reparations. The definitions of “restitution”

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and “reparations” used in this essay are as follows: restitution is the return
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of specific unlawfully acquired goods to the lawfully determined owner or descendants (or estate) thereof; reparations are the return of goods or payment of 404 Not Found compensation by […]