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At the British Museum

Peter Campbell: American Prints

8 May 2008
... country, its people, its history and its landscape. In later prints these local references are displaced and international reputations established. In his preface to Stephen Coppel’s catalogue, AntonyGriffiths tells how the material made its way into the museum’s collection. The exhibition, which carries on until 7 September, shows how the knowledge, intelligence and enthusiasm of curators made ...

Rub gently out with stale bread

Adam Smyth: The Print Craze

2 November 2017
The Print Before Photography: An Introduction to European Printmaking 1550-1820 
by Antony Griffiths.
British Museum, 560 pp., £60, August 2016, 978 0 7141 2695 1
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... surrogate for a painting that couldn’t be bought, and so a marker of an absence, the Boydell print was also (or was becoming) an artistic object in itself, an illustration of the new idea that (in AntonyGriffiths’s words) ‘a multiple could be a work of art’. While recent studies of the history of the book have, after D.F. McKenzie, richly described the relations between printers, publishers ...

Glimpsed in the Glare

Michael Neill: Shakespeare in 1606

17 December 2015
1606: William Shakespeare and the Year of Lear 
by James Shapiro.
Faber, 423 pp., £20, October 2015, 978 0 571 23578 0
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...  nothing less than ‘Shakespeare: His true likeness revealed at last’. The detective who had ‘cracked the Tudor code’ was the botanist, horticulturalist and historian of gardening Mark Griffiths: his elaborately illustrated essay, ‘Face to Face with Shakespeare’, focused on John Gerard’s well-known Elizabethan manual of botany, The Herball or, General Historie of Plantes, and purported ...


Alan Bennett: What I did in 2016

5 January 2017
... up in the canteen recasting.’ Which indeed we were, with my first thought Alan Rickman, I suppose because the rasping quality in his voice echoed Auden’s harsh tones. However, because Richard Griffiths was available and indeed anxious to play the part, the role went to him. Emergency casting sessions such as the one Gambon knew we were holding are always mildly hysterical and often very funny as ...


Alan Bennett: What I did in 2013

9 January 2014
... but since all that stands between Open and Closed is a five-bar gate it’s maybe English Heritage’s way of turning a blind eye. 11 January. The doorbell goes around noon. I’m expecting Antony Crolla, the photographer, so don’t look through the window and open the door to find what I take to be a builder with a loose piece of flex in his hand and what could be a meter. He says he’s ...


Alan Bennett: Allelujah!

3 January 2019
... this a holiday,’ says R., but though we do the same things and often visit the same places we always have a good time, particularly in Norfolk.30 June. On holiday I read and am wholly absorbed by Antony Beevor’s Arnhem. Though I am defeated by much of the military detail, the human side of the action – the troops in the gliders, their fears and all too often their fates – is beautifully told ...

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