News and reviews

New Art Books for the New Season in Hyperallergic

Added on 12/09/2020

Once upon a time the American artist Dorothea Tanning would have been regarded as a lesser force than her husband Max Ernst. Not so now. Transformations is the fullest and most nuanced account of her trajectory as an artist to date.

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Going All City reviewed in the Times Literary Supplement

Added on 11/09/2020

On almost any street in almost any city, you’re bound to spot a terse mononym in stylized lettering. Afeks, Cure, Kos or Zerks. Going All City offers a riveting insight into the formative years of Cisco, one of the most prolific taggers…

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Helen Fry’s MI9 reviewed in the Times

Added on 07/09/2020

The wartime organisation known as MI9 (Military Intelligence 9) is one of the least known agencies of the Second World War. Unlike the Special Operations Executive, whose clandestine work has received wide coverage in recent years …

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I Don’t Want to Go to the Taj Mahal reviewed in Culture Matters

Added on 01/09/2020

Charlie Hill’s memoir, I Don’t Want to Go to the Taj Mahal, is told in a series of linked poetic vignettes. ‘Vignettes’ is definitely the right word too: each memory comes to the reader as a distinct and self-contained portrait …

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Sons of the Waves reviewed in the TLS

Added on 21/08/2020

In 1905, the future poet laureate and experienced seaman John Masefield published Sea Life in Nelson’s Time. It was both his first book and the first in English to examine the lives of the ordinary seaman.

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Why the Covid crisis will hasten the break-up of Britain

Added on 19/08/2020

In the mid-1930s the British socialist Basil Bunting wrote to his fellow poet and friend, the American fascist Ezra Pound, lamenting the difficulty of achieving radical change in Britain. Bunting told Pound that the nation’s “owners” …

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How John Cage fell for fungi in the Guardian

Added on 19/08/2020

In February 1959, while on a visit to fellow composer Luciano Berio in Milan, John Cage appeared five times on a popular Italian television quiz show called Lascia o Raddoppia. Cage performed several new sound pieces…

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Deporting Black Britons extracted in the Guardian

Added on 18/08/2020

Sitting in the computer room of Open Arms drop-in centre, a homeless shelter in Kingston, Jamaica, I turned on my recorder and asked Jason to tell me about his life there. In his distinct east London accent, he described arguments …

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Go the Way Your Blood Beats reviewed in the TLS

Added on 14/08/2020

None of us is inherently immune to the binary logic – man/woman, heterosexual/homosexual, white/black – of our dominant culture. This view forces us to the extremes; to embrace multiplicity, or legitimate ourselves by denying it.

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The Kinks: Songs of the Semi-Detached reviewed in the TLS

Added on 14/08/2020

There is something oddly comforting about listening to the Kinks during a global pandemic. Everything you might need while in isolation is there: Kodachrome snapshots of the city and the village green, vividly populated…

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Stanley Kubrick: American Filmmaker reviewed in the Independent

Added on 11/08/2020

Pauline Kael was no fan of Stanley Kubrick’s movies. She deplored his “arctic spirit”. She compared A Clockwork Orange to the work of a Teutonic professor. In her review of 2001: A Space Odyssey, she wrote: “It’s a bad, bad sign…

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Finding Dora Marr reviewed in the Guardian

Added on 11/08/2020

Brigitte Benkemoun, a French journalist, gets her story off to an intriguing start. She explains that after her husband lost his small Hermès diary, she managed to find a replacement on eBay, listed under “small vintage leather goods”.

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