The latest on books and the arts


Students at the art school of the Royal Academy of Arts in London, 1932. Photo: Fox Photos/Getty
The rear-view mirror is no basis to reflect on the future of education
By Nigel Carrington - 28 November 11:53

Britain is globally famous for its creative education but people who prematurely mourn the death of art school are missing the real threat.

In the Frame: One Hundred Per Cent
By Tom Humberstone - 28 November 10:39

Tom Humberstone’s weekly comic.

Smart set: Kate Reardon and staff at Tatler
Rah to the people: the mad world of Tatler brought to life
By Rachel Cooke - 27 November 16:11

A magazine peopled almost entirely by those who think Debrett’s New Guide to Etiquette and Modern Manners is full of genuinely useful advice.

Sleazing on a sunny afternoon: Bill Murray shows Jaeden Lieberher how to do it in St Vincent. PHOTO: REX/WEINSTEIN COMPANY/COURTESY EVE
Return of the slacker: the scuzzy appeal of Bill Murray in St Vincent
By Ryan Gilbey - 27 November 16:02

Murray plays Vincent, a crabby, pasty-faced soak whose days are spent mooching around his neighbourhood, frequenting dive bars and canoodling with a pregnant prostitute. 

Marilynne Robinson on goodness, fallibility and faith: “I’ve had atheists ask me to pray for them”
By Philip Maughan - 27 November 15:00

The American novelist Marilynne Robinson tells Philip Maughan why good characters are more interesting than bad ones and why a sense of our own fallibility keeps us sane.

Loose canon: a 1779 engraving of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. Image: Getty
Rude awakening: how Mozart's filthy mind shocked Maggie
By Antonia Quirke - 27 November 10:00

Mozart was fond of “scatological smut” and found “the sound of rude words especially hilarious”.

Marching on his stomach: a volunteer in Thomas Rowlandson's Private Drilling (1798)
Faces in the crowd: as Napoleon roamed, the home front was feverish
By Frances Wilson - 27 November 10:00

Uglow’s subject is the everyday life of those who stayed behind, for whom the 22 years of conflict were experienced in terms of boredom, bad weather, missing fathers, sons or brothers, the price of bread, failed harvests, mourning, making money and, overwhelmingly, reading the newspapers.

Flatcap handbags, folding wellies, and Derek: The Apprentice blog series 10, episode 8
By Anoosh Chakelian - 27 November 8:34

The teams are let loose in Somerset to explore the "rural market".

Jeffrey Tambor (left) as Maura in Transparent
TV enters its Amazon Age – with the best show since Breaking Bad
By Mark Lawson - 25 November 16:12

Critic’s Notes by Mark Lawson. 

Heirs, spares and chairs: the Fulford family, stars of BBC3's Life is Toff. Photo: BBC Pictures
Inside Tatler, Life is Toff and British TV’s troubling obsession with all things posh
By Rhiannon Lucy Cosslett - 24 November 13:01

Call me a lefty conspiracy theorist if you must, but it has not escaped my notice that the trend for posh porn has coincided with the term of the poshest government in living memory.

In the Frame: A Brief Guide to the Non-Apology
By Tom Humberstone - 21 November 11:50

Tom Humberstone's weekly comic.

Jonathan Brugh.
From Orson Welles to What We Do in the Shadows: A brief history of the mockumentary
By Ryan Gilbey - 20 November 17:40

The greatest offerings from the only new film genre to have emerged in the last 50 years.

Hostess cap: Sergeant Dorothy Ellis wearing her WPC uniform outside the Royal Parks Constabulary, 26th June 1978. Photo: Getty
Confessions of a Copper paints a not-so fuzzy picture of the fuzz
By Rachel Cooke - 20 November 16:07

I found it easy to keep my nostalgia in check. Tampering with evidence? Fitting up? Weird comments about “menopausal” shoplifters? No, thanks.

Big chill: Bilginer walks in the bleak landscape of Ceylan's Palme d'Or-winning drama
Cold, cold heart: Winter Sleep is far from a Turkish delight
By Ryan Gilbey - 20 November 16:00

While it is no hardship to gaze upon ravishing images of the landscape as its autumnal glow vanishes under an icy crust, there’s not much to keep the intellect thrumming over the course of 196 minutes.

Rubbernecking: Spitting Image artist Roger Law, subject of a recent Private Passions, pictured in 2000. Photo: Getty
Private Passions favours the gently gently approach
By Antonia Quirke - 20 November 15:49

Antonia Quirke on Radio. 

Image from Venice by Katie and Giancarlo Caldesi (Hardie Grant, £25). Photography: Helen Cathcart
The eastern ghosts that haunt Venetian cuisine
By Felicity Cloake - 20 November 15:48

Once upon a time, the food of Venice was considered the finest in Europe, “specialising in wild boar, peacock, venison, elaborate salads and architectural pastries”.

Mourning in numbers: visitors to the poppies at the Tower of London. Photo: Getty
Will Self: Public mourning is the loyalty oath of the modern British state
By Will Self - 20 November 15:47

The visitors who have filled the precincts of the Tower of London since August have been deeply moved by the great crowd of ceramic poppies planted in its dry moat – but moved by what, exactly?

Central Saint Martins.
Is this the end of the British art school?
By Isabel Sutton - 20 November 15:40

Art schools used to be a place where the socially and intellectually marginal could distinguish themselves. Now, with unattainable entry requirements and a hefty price tag, they’re becoming a dwelling place for commercial interests and the children of the international elite.

The book that flew: A hawk used for pigeon control in St Pancras station. Photo: Getty
Peregrines over Westminster, my bloody great beehive and the Samuel Johnson Prize
By Helen Macdonald - 20 November 10:00

The winner of this year’s Samuel Johnson Prize for her book H is for Hawk chronicles a life-changing week. 

"A metaphor for success and the American Dream": The Apprentice blog series 10, episode 7
By Anoosh Chakelian - 20 November 8:50

Candidates hop on a plane to the city that never... invests.

Signs and wonders: Paul Nash's Landscape of the Megaliths, featured in Adam Thorpe's On Silbury Hill. Image: Lauren McLean/V&A Images
Books of the Year: NS friends and contributors choose their favourite reading of 2014
By New Statesman - 19 November 16:32

Including: Hilary Mantel, Rowan Williams, Grayson Perry, Alan Johnson, A S Byatt, Geoff Dyer, Alex Salmond, Kate Fox, William Boyd and Dave Eggers. 

Jacob Blessing the Sons of Joseph by Rembrandt, Museumslandschaft Hessen Kassel, Germany
Man in the mirror: Rembrandt: the Late Works at the National Gallery
By Michael Prodger - 18 November 17:21

In later life the painter turned away from the light and towards himself.

Shopping for the few: signage in a branch of Waitrose. Photo: George Redgrave/Flickr
The place for rudeness is not in an anonymous letter but the queue in Waitrose
By Nicholas Lezard - 14 November 16:02

Nicholas Lezard’s weekly column, Down and Out. 

A photograph by Garry Winogrand, New York, 1955. Photo: The Estate of Garry Winogrand, courtesy Fraenkel Gallery, San Francisco
Recalling Winograndia: Garry Winogrand's camera captured post-war America like few others
By Oliver Farry - 14 November 13:54

In Paris, the first retrospective of Winogrand's photography for 25 years mines the huge collection of unpublished material in his archives to produce an unprecedented narrative of his career that plays out like a Hollywood biopic.