Is London street art dying?

Image: Frank K. Molloy DAVID UPTON tries his hand at making his mark Everyone knows about Banksy, who came to fame around 2000 for his cheeky anarchic spray paintings and stencils on walls in Bristol, and later all over the world. His real name is still officially secret, though by now his works sell in…

England’s musical Shakespeare

Henry Purcell STUART MILLSON gives a glimpse into the life of Henry Purcell Henry Purcell (1659-95) is forever associated with the birth of opera (or masques) in England – works such as King Arthur and The Fairy Queen - the creation of semi-operatic scenic cantatas, like his music for The Tempest, and with expansive works…

The evolutions of revolutionary architecture

A 1934 competition project, Narkomtiazhprom - from Soviet Design From Constructivism to Modernism,1920-1980 Anna Bokov, VKhUTEMAS and the Pedagogy of Space, 1920-1930 Park Books, 2021, 624pp, illus., $65 Katherine Zubovich, Moscow Monumental: Soviet Skyscrapers and Urban Life in Stalin’s Capital Princeton University, 2021, 274pp + xii, illus., £34 Kristina Krasnyanskaya, Alexander Semenov (eds.), Soviet Design…

Painting the pear orchard

NICHOLAS BOOTH captures a fleeting moment in Kent I packed my battered little orchestra of colours in an old Fortnum’s bag along with some rolled up paper and a bottle of ginger beer and set off for the pear orchard which lies across a road at the back of the housing estate where my mother…

The decadence and darkness of Symbolism

Caresses, by Fernand Khnopff Decadence and Dark Dreams: Belgian Symbolism Ralph Geis (ed.), Hirmer, 2020, hardback, 336pp, fully illus., €45/£42/$50 ALEXANDER ADAMS immerses himself in disquiet and dreamscapes Berlin’s Alte Nationalgalerie exhibition of Belgian Symbolists, Decadence and Dark Dreams: Belgian Symbolism, closed last month. As few were able to attend, for obvious reasons, this article…

Cornysh, Campion, Dowland: England’s sweet songsmiths

STUART MILLSON dives into old English ‘ayrs’ There is a persistent idea that English music only really got going with Parry and Elgar, but four centuries earlier William Cornysh, Thomas Campion and John Dowland had possessed national and European reputations. William Cornysh was one of England’s leading Tudor composers, gaining the attention and then patronage…

Campus tragedy

MICHAEL WILDING surveys the sorry state of Australia’s universities The systematic degradation of the universities has now been continuing for 40 years. It began at the end of the 1970s, with the election of Margaret Thatcher in Britain and Ronald Reagan in the USA. Australia dutifully followed suit. The policies were a mixture of reprisals…

The resurrection and evolution of a metalhead

Jacek Karczmarczyk, CC BY 3.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0>, via Wikimedia Commons WILLIAM STROOCK reforges an old musical allegiance In 1987 this scrawny, disgruntled 14-year-old became a metalhead. It’s an old story. I hated school and life and everything, really. Metal was the best available outlet for expressing that. I stamped my feet and pumped my fist to…