Frieze Sculpture in Regent’s Park

Neptune by Matthew MonahanHappy New Year! It’s 2017 and you need something to do on Bank Holiday Monday, so here’s a suggestion for you. A walk in Regent’s Park taking in the Frieze Sculpture Park in the English Garden. There are seventeen sculptures by some top names so you’re bound to find one that you like. Continue reading

Top posts of 2016 – my favourite five

Greenwich Park cherry blossom avenue

It’s time to look back at 2016 and pick my best posts of the year. Not as easy as you might think – there’s plenty fighting for a place, and it’s tempting to choose ten or even more. But I’m going to stand firm at five, so you know the winners have really earned their place. Here they are, in date order. Continue reading

Christmas at the Dickens Museum

Dickens MuseumIf it’s Christmas it must be time for  holly and ivy and A Christmas Carol, Charles Dickens’ ever-popular story of the true meaning of Christmas. So where better to open the Christmas season than at the Charles Dickens Museum on Doughty Street, where the rooms are decorated for Christmas just as they might have been in Dickens’ day. Continue reading

Fabulous French Impressionists at the Courtauld Gallery

Monet, Vase of FlowersA casual visit to the Courtauld Gallery in Somerset House last week brought a reminder of just how fantastic its collection of French Impressionist paintings is. All the great pictures are there – the best works of Manet, Monet, Degas, Renoir hang on its walls, all displayed in a matchless historical setting. That’s the treasure house of the Courtauld. Continue reading

Decorated cats on Heal’s Cat Design Trail

Heal's Cat trailCats – that’s a good start. Elegant elongated cats and a spiral staircase to boot – even better. Heal’s in Tottenham Court Road know this. They’ve had a cat guarding their Cecil Brewer staircase since 1916, a slim elegant feline perched on a window ledge surveying all that passes. Now, to celebrate the staircase’s centenary, they’ve commissioned ten designers to decorate replicas of their cat, and the results couldn’t be more different. Continue reading

God’s own Junkyard – where Neon never Dies

God's own JunkyardWalthamstow is full of secrets. Who’d have thought that this quiet suburb at the end of the Victoria Line would turn out to be home not only to the William Morris Gallery but possibly the most unusual arthouse you’ll ever visit – a cavernous shed lined with neon signs, gloriously jammed together in no particular order, all fully lit and fighting for your attention.  Continue reading

Flying fish and warring roses – what kind of bank is this?

Lloyds Bank Law courts BranchThe thing about London is, stuff gets reused. Buildings get reused. There used to be a restaurant at Aldwych called Bank because, you guessed it, the building used to be a bank. And the most fantastical bank in town used to be a restaurant.  Continue reading

Jazz Age Fashion and Art Deco in Bermondsey

Jazz Age fashionWho doesn’t love the Jazz Age, that decade of zinging fashion and wild behaviour that gave us the flapper, the drop-waist dress, silk pyjamas and Art Deco style? The Fashion and Textile Museum in Bermondsey, just along from the Shard, knows we can’t resist it, so they’ve brought together a stunning display of haute couture and ready to wear fashion from 1919 to 1929 and teamed it with a fascinating series of talks about 1920’s life and style. Continue reading

Aga Khan Museum Toronto 

Aga Khan Museum Toronto2016 seems to be my year for visiting brand new museums. After the Tate Modern extension last month, I can add the Aga Khan Museum in Toronto to my haul. Not quite so new as the Tate, as it opened in 2014, but my excuse is it’s further to go. And a spectacular catch it is too, particularly impressive on the day we visited when the sun blazed down and the temperature was in the thirties. Continue reading