Samson Kambalu’s Antelope review – an imperial showdown on the fourth plinth


Two greyish-brown bronze figures stand on Trafalgar Square’s fourth plinth. Although both are much more than lifesize, one is unnaturally taller than the other; this is the only thing that deviates from the pair’s studied naturalism. So seamlessly do they blend with the other bronze statues, with Nelson on his column and Landseer’s lions, one might begin to think that this particular battleground...

A startled youth on a tyre swing: Tyler Mitchell’s best photograph


The American south is a verdant place, full of beautiful and seductive environments, but it’s also threatening, when you think about its racial and political history. Atlanta, where I was born and raised, is one of the greenest cities in the US, basically a city in a forest. I am an only child and had a lot of free time to meditate in these lush spaces. Raised in the suburbs, I went to school in...

Carbuncles and King Charles: was the royal family’s meddling supertroll right about architecture?


‘The most prominent architecture critic in the world” is how the New York Times once described King Charles III. It was 1989, and the then Prince of Wales was enjoying a wave of publicity after the launch of his spiritual crusade against the heresies of modern architecture. It was a high-profile, three-pronged attack, comprising a prime-time 75-minute BBC documentary, a dedicated V&A...

Major Alexander McQueen exhibition to open in Victoria in late 2022


The fashion designer Alexander McQueen once said: “If you want to know me, just look at my work.” Australians will soon have the opportunity to do just that, with a major exhibition exploring his designs and influences set to open at the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV) in December. Sixty garments and accessories will travel from the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (Lacma) to Melbourne for...

The Bored Ape NFT craze is all about ego and money, not art


Bored Ape looks almost as bored as I feel when I think about NFTs (non-fungible tokens) and their supposedly seismic impact on art. My jaw slides, my eyelids hang down and I want to pick lice from my fur. Even though I can identify with Bored Ape, I won’t be buying it, unlike Eminem who has bought another in this highly fashionable NFT “art” brand that looks slightly like him. It’s called EminApe...

Banksy sets auction record with £18.5m sale of shredded painting


A partially shredded Banksy painting has sold for more than £18.5m at auction, a record for the street artist. Love is in the Bin fetched £18,582,000 at Sotheby’s in London, selling for vastly more than its £4m-£6m guide price. The artwork was the remains of the anonymous artist’s live destruction of his piece Girl with Balloon at the same auction house in a piece of performance art, which sold...

Melting moguls: life-size Rupert and Lachlan Murdoch candles burn in Melbourne installation


ublic burning has understandably had a bad rap throughout history, from Savonarola’s late 15th century bonfires of the vanities and his own eventual death by fire, to the Nazi student book burnings of 1933; there is usually something ominous about fire in public places, the flicker of mob rule. Then again, the burning of effigies can represent an act of political solidarity. So what are we to...

Mound zero: what is Marble Arch’s new landmark all about?


Build a hill and they will come. This, at least, is what Westminster council is betting on, having lavished £2m on a temporary mound. Rearing up at the western end of Oxford Street as a faceted green shell, looking like a landscape from a low-fi video game, the 25-metre high Marble Arch Mound is one of the more unlikely strategies for stimulating our Covid-stricken high streets. “You have to give...


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