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Headlong/Michael Frayn

Michael Frayn’s novel Headlong operates on 2 levels. The first is a fiction in which Martin, a philosopher married to Kate an art historian, chances upon a painting of his neighbour in the country which he strongly believes to be a missing Brueghel. It is worth millions and he starts a [...]

October 13, 2019 // 0 Comments

The Great Vermeer forger

Following my article today I thought readers might be interested in this article on the Telegraph website about a forger of Vermeer with a rackety life and dubious allegiances – Vermeer [...]

October 8, 2019 // 0 Comments

Tim’s Vermeer

Johannes Vermeer, the Dutch Baroque painter (1638-75) was always admired for his photo-like lucidity. In this documentary Texan inventor Tim Jenison advances the theory that to achieve such a photo-like realism Vermeer must have used the technique of painting from an optic in a dark room (camera [...]

October 8, 2019 // 0 Comments

Something to write home about

As it happens I was out on the golf course yesterday partaking in a traditional practice round in the company of a Canadian relative by marriage in advance of an annual family tournament – an outing in days of yore used to be a welcome warm-up for the main event. Sadly, I fear that at my stage of [...]

October 4, 2019 // 0 Comments

$50m art swindle/BBC 2

This documentary is the story of art dealer Michel Cohen who went from rags to riches and back to rags again. Born in impoverished circumstance in France after the war he came to the USA with a friend in the 80s. He bought a stack of lithographs and sold them. He realised that he had a talent to [...]

September 25, 2019 // 0 Comments

Ivon Hitchens /Pallant Gallery

I like to say “I’ve a Hitchens” – the alliteration being sufficiently close to Ivon Hitchens that many think I possess one of his, rather than one of his son John. Whether by accident or design, John’s rectangular abstract landscapes of the Downs resemble his Dad’s work in [...]

September 3, 2019 // 0 Comments

The Impartiality of Love/Hannah Rothschild

This is a novel of many parts, most of which do not work. Above all it reveals the amoral ruthlessness of the art world after a woman called Annie, a cook who is unlucky in love, discovers a lost Antoine Watteau called Improbability of Love in a junk shop. This develops into a chick lit romance, an [...]

August 6, 2019 // 0 Comments

Fake or Fortune

It’s good to see Fake or Fortune back on our screens – not on Sundays at 8.00pm but Thursday evening at 9.00 pm. Its formula of the investigation into whether a painting is genuine or not clearly attracts the viewing public. It’s a bit contrived with the informal chats between presenter [...]

August 3, 2019 // 0 Comments

Take a look at this one

As Rusters  and indeed “any fule no” [(c) Nigel Molesworth circa 1955], on this organ we do lists. I need say no more. Here’s another one worth considering, courtesy of a feature spotted overnight on the website of – THE [...]

July 7, 2019 // 0 Comments

Adventurers of modern art

I chanced upon this Sky Arts programme about Paris and its contribution to art and writing from 1900-50. This period produced artists that shaped modern art: Picasso, Miro, Chagall, Braque, Andre Breton (the father of surrealism) and the better known artist he loathed Salvador Dali, Cocteau, Chaim [...]

June 27, 2019 // 0 Comments

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