The Easel


7th June 2015

Velazquez at the Grand Palais, Paris

The Impressionists are credited with ‘rediscovering’ Velazquez. Picasso, Dali and Bacon have all painted homages. Many regard him as Europe’s greatest painter because of the way he (together with Caravaggio) took painting beyond idealised Catholic propriety. A blockbuster show in Paris covers his entire career. Images that complement this review are here. Image: Wikipedia

6th June 2015

‘Keys to a Passion’: the Foundation Louis Vuitton debut show

Bernard Arnault, a French businessman and major art collector, has established the Foundation Louis Vuitton in a purpose-built Frank Gehry gallery in Paris. The first exhibition overflows with masterpieces from across the globe and announces lofty curatorial intentions. This review seems unsure whether to gush more over the art, the building or the institution’s ambition. “Billionaire collectors are not all equal. Any of them can buy, but who can borrow?

Three Era’s in the art of Richard Diebenkorn

Richard Diebenkorn was a figurative painter in mid-career who, on moving to Los Angeles, abruptly shifted to (less fashionable) abstract painting. The result was his Ocean Park series, described by Robert Hughes as “surely one of the most distinguished meditations on landscape in painting since Monet’s Water Lillies”. A “revelatory” London exhibition contrasts his two very different styles. An RA podcast starts slow but is excellent