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Mon cher Monsieur

Julian Barnes: Prove your Frenchness, 22 April 2021

Letters to Camondo 
by Edmund deWaal.
Chatto, 182 pp., £14.99, April, 978 1 78474 431 1
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The House of Fragile Things: Jewish Art Collectors and the Fall of France 
by James McAuley.
Yale, 301 pp., £25, March, 978 0 300 23337 7
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... In France, antisemitism was far more blatant. In the Paris of the 1870s, the diarist Edmond de Goncourt complained that even the grandest salons had become ‘infested with Jews and Jewesses’. Worse still, these infesters were charming the people Goncourt most looked up to. He particularly hated Charles Ephrussi, an art critic and collector – and a ...

At Kettle’s Yard

Eleanor Birne: The Reopening, 22 March 2018

... There are a couple of new things temporarily lodging in the old house: vitrines of porcelain by Edmund deWaal; marks done in chalk on Helen’s bedroom window by Cornelia Parker. Outside, in St Peter’s churchyard, Nathan Coley’s illuminated text of white lightbulbs on a line of scaffolding reads THE SAME FOR ...

The Bloke Who Came Fifth

Adam Mars-Jones: Grayson Perry’s Manhood, 1 June 2017

The Descent of Man 
by Grayson Perry.
Penguin, 160 pp., £8.99, April 2017, 978 0 14 198174 1
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... to the sublime. The contrast between Perry and the other pre-eminent British ceramic artist, Edmund deWaal, is positively caricatural, in both artistic and literary production. Sample sentence from The Hare with Amber Eyes: ‘In the ballroom, with its three great windows looking across the square to the ...

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