La Gioconda

Newsletter 41 (18 September 2019) Ekphrasis is a term for the vivid description of an object, often a work of art. Often it is a verbal representation of a visual representation. Images and objects, however powerfully they appear to express an idea, are mute and unknowable. Words can make them speak in many voices, attach …

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Squaring the Circle

Newsletter 40 (26 April 2019) Waking in Camigliano I can hear buzz-saws snarling down in the valley. A team of woodcutters, probably Albanian, is at work thinning down the trees of the macchia, mostly the tough Mediterranean holm-oaks, Quercus ilex. The logs will be left to mature and then piled up in huge lorry-loads, to …

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Lotto again

Newsletter 39 (25 January 2019) In a former newsletter I wrote of the particular pleasure in leaving behind rooms in an art gallery full of religious paintings, however wonderful, to come across portraits of ‘real’ people. Such an experience has been recently available at the National Gallery. The exhibition exploring the relationship between Giovanni Bellini …

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