The Easel

Review: James Ensor By Luc Tuymans, Royal Academy ‘Unsettling’

Grotesque figures painted in cheery hues – just one of many curiosities that are James Ensor. He lived in coastal Belguim, looking after his parents’ curio shop. His art, as one critic put it, expressed the world “from above the shop”. Early career bourgeois interiors gave way to masks, skulls and fantastical images. Beyond categorisation seems a consensus view. Unsettling, too.