The year of viewing dangerously

Television in 2020 has been prescient, poignant and palliative


A breath of fresh paint

A revival in figurative art and the changing face of portraiture

A boy’s own adventure

Privileged images: the photography of Jacques Henri Lartigue

A maestro of detail long before Leonardo

How Jan van Eyck changed the trajectory of Western art

Brandt and Moore: The gentleman and the miner

Based on the impulse to look at everything afresh, Modernist photography could not help but deliver a jumble of perspectives, on both sides of the Atlantic


Minds of their own

Contagious curiosity about the way consciousness works

Testing positivism

"The Murder of Professor Schlick" brilliantly illuminates an ambitious movement in philosophy

Twin terrors

Laurence Rees tries his best to cut through much of the mythology that infuses our collective memory of Hitler and Stalin

Quality not quantity

Those who call Kubrick the greatest director in the history of cinema really do have a point


In search of ‘English Proust’

Can the Recherche be adapted and remain Proust? And should it really be seen as therapy?

Dread, time and the pandemic

Søren Kierkegaard’s reflections on worry are useful reading for those in lockdown

The healing power of birdsong

The ornithologist W.H. Hudson sought wilderness in the city. It is as if he was writing for us today


The end of cinema?

Britain’s already beleaguered cinema sector has been plunged into an existential crisis. It should be the moment for all those who love film to rally to the cinematic cause

Charlie Chaplin à la Française

Louis de Funès may be France’s most beloved actor. The choice tells us a lot about those who love him

Theft And Lies In Vienna

Having stolen a Klimt masterpiece, the Nazis could only show it if they hid the Jewish identity of its subject

Getting Away With Murder

A new thriller set in late-Stalinist Soviet Union has alarmed Russian authorities


A lost paradise of purity

Terror and transcendence in the late masterpieces of Schubert

Meistersinger rehabilitated

Wagner’s comedy is sometimes accused of being antisemitic. But does the evidence stack up?

Acts of remembrance

Commemorating those lost in the pandemic has not been possible. But we can mourn through music

The problem of Shostakovich

Does the idea of the composer covertly commenting on totalitarianism improve his music?


The year of viewing dangerously

Television in 2020 has been prescient, poignant and palliative

That’s entertainment

‘Vast swathes of the television production community stopped working overnight. Any television show involving camera crews, studio audiences, the general public, travel, or proximity of any kind, was, at best, postponed indefinitely; at worst, cancelled outright’

Murdering reality: the spurious spies of fiction

Hollywood lacks the wit and the will to convey the complexities of the secret world

A hunger for the truth

A film about the the Holodomor’s exposure should prompt debate on the famine-denialist Walter Duranty


Theatre’s plague year

A delicate ecosystem has been disrupted. The effects are dire

Infectious enthusiasms

Hard times on stage—and off it

Honour and courage

Tom Stoppard’s roots and Caryl Churchill’s dystopia

Special affects

The National finds a niche in staging literary adaptations while Shakespeare returns to school in the Donmar's Teenage Dick