Call for arts support in Northern Ireland

Call for arts support in Northern Ireland

Arts sector representatives and tourist companies in Northern Ireland have called on politicians to recognise the important role the arts plays in the economy of the region.

Music venues survey shows third ‘under threat’

Music venues survey shows third ‘under threat’

But Scotland embraces ‘Agent of Change’ principle.

Hockney is critics' choice

Hockney is critics' choice

David Hockney is to receive the Critics’ Circle Award for 2017, only the second time a visual artist has been selected for the prestigious prize in the Circle’s 105-year history.

Photojournalism's art gallery

Photojournalism's art gallery

A new website at last gives Fleet Street’s photographers a showcase for their work as art. Simon Tait spoke to its founders, Fleet Street veterans Alan Sparrow and Bret Painter-Spanyol

Museums' collecting frozen by funding cuts

Museums' collecting frozen by funding cuts

Britain’s museums are being increasingly excluded from the art market by cuts in funding, stifling the acquisitions that are the life force for public collections.

Creative industries on track to create 1m local jobs - Nesta

The creative industries are driving the UK’s economic growth, expanding twice as fast as any other sector, according to new research by Nesta.

BAFTA/BFI set harassment zero-tolerance rules

BAFTA/BFI set harassment zero-tolerance rules

Film and television organisations led by BAFT and the BFI have set a series of principles and guidelines to deal with bullying and sexual harassment in the industry.

Tax deal takes early Freuds back to Lakes

Tax deal takes early Freuds back to Lakes

Two really portraits by Lucian Freud have been left to the nation in lieu of tax and allocated to the Abbott Hall Gallery in Kendal.

Mary Beard to front Front Row

Mary Beard to front Front Row

The classics professor Mary Beard is to anchor the revamped television version of the arts review magazine Front Row when it returns in the spring.

17c mystery painting still baffling experts

17c mystery painting still baffling experts

This large picture of 1665 by an anonymous artist is one of the great mysteries of the art world, and is the centerpiece of a forthcoming major Norwich Castle Museum exhibition.

London goes Underground

London goes Underground

Photographs of some faces and places associated with the capital go on display at five London Tube stations this week.

British Art Fair goes to the Saatchi

British Art Fair goes to the Saatchi

Celebrating its 30th birthday this year, the 20/21 British Art Fair has changed ownership and will move to the Saatchi Gallery.

National Gallery visitor figures slump

National Gallery visitor figures slump

The National Gallery and National Portrait Gallery are losing visitors, by 20% and 42% respectively, according to figures for May to December 2017 published in The Times.

Call for special arts visas

MU and Dance UK suggest post Brexit measures

New ACE youth chiefs

New ACE youth chiefs

Arts Council England have appointed Hannah Fouracre as director of music education, and Anne Applebaum as director of children and young people.

THEATRE    Caesar and the young citizens

THEATRE Caesar and the young citizens

The Royal Shakespeare Company’s First Encounters tour not only takes Shakespeare to schools in deprived areas, it makes their pupils part of the production. Simon Tait reports in the first of a two part feature on the RSC’s touring. Next month, AI talks to deputy artistic director Erica Whyman about mainstage touring

Creative Scotland U turn on funding

Creative Scotland U turn on funding

Funding restored to five companies 

Sheffield to leave British Council

Sheffield to leave British Council

Graham Sheffield is to leave the British Council in June after seven years as director arts.

Simon Tait's Diary

Luminous Lewes

One of the most delightful county towns in the country gets the light treatment this weekend, but a son et lumiere with a difference in that it traces the ancient town’s long history. Among other things it’s the place where Thomas Paine wrote his Rights of Man, but the light installations pick out the many other things Lewes hosted, elucidated by poetry, music and performance created by the acclaimed poet/writer, John Agard, and Ruth Kerr, soprano/composer, with her choir, The Paddock Singers. It’s called LewesLight and is completely a non-commercial operation, with the professionals involved giving their services free, and is devised to give work experience opportunities for young people, and be a showcase for the work of digital media design, photography and production arts students at Sussex Downs College, Lewes, who have created it with the help of undergraduates from University of Brighton and Northbrook College, Worthing.

 

Burrell reborn

That strange and invaluable collection in what looks like a giant summerhouse in Glasgow’s Pollok Park, the Burrell Collection, has got £15m from the Heritage Lottery Fund to do the place up. The full cost is expected to be £66 million with half of it coming from Glasgow City Council and 80% of the rest already raised. The collection of 9,000 objects of art and design was given to the city by the businessman Sir William Burrell who specified that it should be housed somewhere 16 miles from the city centre. But there wasn’t anywhere, and in the end the current building was erected in the park in 1983, now listed. Now it is badly in need of refurbishment, and a new look. Here’s how the front elevation will look when the place reopens in 2019.

Paradise referred to

Where do poets find their muses? Well, in the work of other poets quite often, and Keats’s House Museum in Hampstead has discovered that the author of Ode to a Nightingale among a sheaf of other much-quoted Romantic poems liked to turn to John Milton and his Paradise Lost. And not just turn to - on display is Keats’s own copy which is covered in his notes and remarks, probably while he was working on his own epic works such as Hyperion and The Fall of Hyperion. “Milton in every instance pursues his imagination to the utmost...he sees Beauty on the wing, pounces upon it and gorges it to the producing his essential verse...” he has scribbled in a margin. ‘The light and shade – the sort of black brightness...the thousand melancholies and Magnificences of this Page – leaves no room for anything to be said theron, but: ‘so it is’-.” It opens on December 6.

 

 

Squaring up to dance

Billed as a cross between The Office and an Australian cage fight, DanceEast in Ipswich
is offering this challenge in dance by the Australian dance company The Farm. It mixes slapstick, physical theatre and dance to tell the story about an office rivalry between an older and a younger man. It’s called, not unreasonably, Cock Fight and it starts on October 27.

Out of the water closet

Fred Hohler won the first Critics’ Circle Unsung Hero award the other day, and he chose the moment to announce his next project. The first one was the Public Catalogue Foundation, the enterprise to find and catalogue 230,000 oil paintings in public ownership but, as it were, hidden from public gaze. The 85 volumes he produced is now online as Art Line, an invaluable resource. The new one involves pictures like this fabulous 18th century picture of the new Royal Docks in London – he is turning his attention to bringing three centuries of watercolours, of up to 1900, out of the cupboards they’ve been hiding in. He’s calling it The Watercolour World,
it will eventually be online too, there is already sponsorship from the Marandi Foundation, and the Prince of Wales has agreed to be its patron.

 

Pop goes an illusion

So where do you think Pop Art was born? New York? Andy Warhol’s home town of Pittsburg, Pennsylvania? The Royal College of Art. Nah, and the real birthplace has just reopened after a £3.8m lottery-funded refurbishment. It’s Newcastle University’s Hatton Gallery where the godfathers of Pop Art Richard Hamilton and Victor Pasmore used

the gallery as a showcase for what they and their students were developing. Here are Hamilton and Pasmore, left and right, mounting one of their early exhibitions there. So the reopening show, running until January 20, is Pioneers of Pop, which includes the first use of the expression in a letter by Hamilton to friends dated 16 January 1957: “Pop Art is: popular, transient, expendable, low-cost, mass-produced, young, witty, sexy, gimmicky, glamorous, and Big Business”.

 

 

 

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