19th Century / 20th Century / Age of Enlightenment / Art / Culture / Exhibition / Germany / Literature / Medieval / Museum / Renaissance / Review

REVIEW- Germany: Memories of a Nation

2014 has been a year of anniversaries, and accompanying exhibitions to go with many of them. And curiously, from the centenary of the outbreak of World War One to the tercentenary of the ascension of the Hanoverian dynasty to the British throne (the start of the Georgian era), several of these anniversaries have involved Britain and … Continue reading

Art / China / Chinese History / Culture / Exhibition / Literature / Museum / Politics / Review

REVIEW- Ming: 50 Years That Changed China

Six hundred years after it first emerged from a Beijing workshop, the exquisite cloisonné enamel jar looks like it was made yesterday. Bursting with vivid colour, its fine gold lines shimmering in the light, and the beady-eyed dragon almost jumping out of the glass cabinet at you. A truly awesome object, that made such an impression on me, I bought a … Continue reading

19th Century / 20th Century / Age of Enlightenment / Art / Exhibition / London History / Museum / Photography / Review / Transport

REVIEW: Bridge

It’s a well-known fact that without the River Thames, there would never have been a London. The Romans, who first founded Londinium in the first century AD, used the river to connect their new province, Britannia, to the rest of their empire, and Londinium flourished as a port and a trading hub. But perhaps more … Continue reading

Age of Enlightenment / Art / Britain / British History / Exhibition / London / Museum / Music / Review

REVIEW- The First Georgians

Unless you have been living in a cave these past few months, you will of course already know that 2014 marks the three-hundred year anniversary of the start of the Georgian era. The fact that the time has come to give this particular chapter in British history the attention it deserves, after being overlooked for far too long, is … Continue reading

20th Century / America / Art / Culture / Exhibition / Museum / Photography / Review

REVIEW- Dennis Hopper: The Lost Album

As amazing discoveries in the back of a closet go, this has got to rank right up there with the best of them. A highly acclaimed body of work thought to be lost forever, which had not been on public display in forty years. A priceless historical archive whose creator had not only turned their … Continue reading

Ancient History / Art / Culture / Exhibition / Museum / Renaissance / Review

REVIEW- Beyond El Dorado

In 1499 – seven years after Christopher Columbus landed in the Americas – Spanish explorers first encountered the land now bearing his name: Colombia*. With its high peaks and dense forest, this was an enchanting, deeply mysterious land. And no mystery would live on in European imaginations in quite the same way as the legend … Continue reading

20th Century / Art / Britain / Culture / Exhibition / Museum / Photography / Review

REVIEW- Only In England

This exhibition sees the coming together of  two museums and of the work of two enormously influential British photographers. The Media Space at London’s Science Museum is a brand new gallery built to showcase highlights from the National Photography Archive, held by the National Media Museum in Bradford (part of the Science Museum Group). The … Continue reading

Art / Britain / British History / Culture / Exhibition / London / London History / Museum / Renaissance / Review

REVIEW- Elizabeth I & Her People

‘A Child And His Nurse’, painted by an unknown English artist circa 1589, is a truly remarkable portrait. The baby boy’s eyes are so bright, and his stare is so piercing, it is genuinely hard to look away. He is only a year or so old, but wears fine clothes, which have been painted in … Continue reading

20th Century / Art / Culture / Exhibition / Museum / Politics / Review

REVIEW- Propaganda: Power & Persuasion

In the accompanying leaflet to the British Library’s Propaganda: Power & Persuasion exhibition is the observation that, in this age of Twitter, blogs and social media – being carried in all of our pockets, and available to us at the press of a button or click of a mouse – anyone can be a propagandist. … Continue reading

20th Century / Art / Exhibition / History of Science / Museum / Photography / Physics / Review / Space

REVIEW- Visions of the Universe

Books about astronomy were always my favourite science books when I was a child. Why? Because they always had the best pictures. Whether it was an exploding star, the rings of Saturn, a volcano on Mars or simply the planet Earth viewed from space, the sense of awe and wonder that those beautiful images evoked … Continue reading