Archived Reviews Books
In an 1882 letter to his brother Theo, Vincent van Gogh included a sketch of his recent watercolor Pollard Willow to help explain his experiments with dark pigments. ©VAN GOGH MUSEUM, AMSTERDAM/VINCENT VAN GOGH FOUNDATION

Reading van Gogh

Vincent van Gogh—The Letters
Edited by Leo Jansen, Hans Luijten, and Nienke Bakker
Thames & Hudson, 2,164 pages, $600 Read More

De Alvear at the Juana Mordó gallery with Nam June Paik in 1989, the year of his first exhibition in Spain. She ended up buying everything in the show.  ©LUIS PÉREZ MÍNGUEZ

A Dealer With Ideas

With her Madrid gallery and her private collection, Helga de Alvear has introduced a wave of high-concept, new-media artists to Spain.
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The Real Thing?

A fingerprint has intensified the debate about the origin of a mysterious drawing sold at auction for $21,850. Experts don't agree whether it's a 19th–century German work or a genuine Leonardo worth $150 million. Read More



Butterflies, honeybees, and even centipedes are turning up in artwork—and, in some cases, helping to make it. Read More


Clothes Connections

Shinique Smith transforms piles of garments destined for export into eye– and thought–provoking installations. Read More


Is Beauty in the Brain of the Beholder?

Researchers in the evolving field of neuroesthetics seek to determine what happens in the cerebral cortex when we see art—and, in the process, figure out what makes great works so mesmerizing. Read More


It All Leads Back to Duchamp

Francis Naumann and 'The Visible Vagina'. Read More


The Enigma of Man Ray

Is the Jewish Museum showcasing crypto–Jewish art?. Read More


Debating a Vatican Cover-Up

Vatican restorers cleaning Michelangelo's last frescoes didn't remove later overpainting, dividing art historians and prompting an appeal to a higher authority. Read More