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George Ortiz was one of the great contemporary collectors. He came to public attention in 1994, when the Royal Academy showed his breathtaking collection of antiquities. Not all were impressed: Lord Renfrew criticised the show, talking of “the large-scale looting which is the ultimate source of so much of what he is able to exhibit.” This stung, because Ortiz’s collecting was guided by the concept of André Malraux’s Musée Imaginaire, where objects could be viewed without the preconceptions that grouped them by country and period – contrary to the traditional practice of curators and art historians.

Everything but the sink: 1646 kitchen scene by the Flemish painter David Teniers the Younger, now restored to Robert Walpole’s former Norfolk home

Charles Darwent on visual Houghton Revisited: There's much to learn by taking a dim view of art

As it did 250 years ago, Velázquez's portrait of Pope Innocent X peers into the gloom at Houghton Hall. It is an extraordinary image in an extraordinary space.

Vladimir Lenin is once again on display to visitors in Moscow's Red Square as mausoleum reopens

Shaun Walker meets the Communist party faithful as the Soviet leader goes back on display

Venus, Flora, Mars and Cupid (Allegory) by Paris Bordone

Art review: Sir Robert Walpole collection, Houghton Hall, Norfolk

This is a story about making amends for cultural asset-stripping in the grand style. A little over three hundred years ago, the debt-ridden grandson of Sir Robert Walpole, England's first Prime Minister, sold off to Catherine the Great of Russia the great art collection amassed by his grandfather.

Point of view: The deck and pool

B&B and Beyond: Cape View Clifton, Cape Town

With ocean-facing terraces and a standout location, this chic guesthouse is the perfect Cape escape

The 14 Guest by Jonty Hurwitz at The Savoy
The Bellgrove Hotel has surged its way into the country's top 100 hotels on Tripadvisors thanks to mock reviews

Glasgow homeless hostel makes Tripadvisor's top 100 UK hotels after 'jokers' post comedy reviews

The Bellgrove Hotel has since been removed from the popular site

Is Pope Francis the most down-to-earth ever?

Just call me Frank: Is Pope Francis the most down-to-earth ever?

First he named himself Francis (of down-with-the-poor Assisi fame) offering an impression of humility only enhanced by his uncanny likeness to Jim Bowen.

Review: Assiette Anglaise 489 Liverpool Road, London N7

Who could have known the world needed a laid-back French bistro that plays reggae music?

Photos taken by activists in Saudi Arabia showing the destruction of the Grand Mosque

The photos Saudi Arabia doesn't want seen – and proof Islam's most holy relics are being demolished in Mecca

Archaeologists fear billion-pound development has led to destruction of key historical sites

Scientologists plan £6m 'country estate' headquarters in Birmingham

The Church of Scientology, which includes celebrities Tom Cruise and John Travolta among its followers, has submitted plans for a £6m “country-estate” headquarters in Birmingham.

Contemporary artist Mark Wallinger is pictured examining his sculpture, 'The White Horse', which was unveiled outside the British Council headquarters in London today, March 5th 2013. The sculpture is a life-size representation of a thoroughbred racehorse made of marble and resin.

Mark Wallinger hopes life-size white horse unveiled on The Mall will 're-kick-start' momentum for its 50m sister

Turner Prize winning artist Mark Wallinger believes his new life-sized sculpture of a racehorse may “re-kick-start” funding for a 50 metre version in Kent, which is currently stuck in Limbo.

Modern classic: New York’s NoMad hotel is the latest to mix traditional style with contemporary touches

Juliet Kinsman: Ancient and modern make the perfect bedfellows

Something to Declare

Margaret Thatcher during a visit to her old school, Kesteven and Grantham Girls’ Grammar, in 1982

Museum manager suspended over statue to Margaret Thatcher

The future Prime Minister was born and brought up in Grantham

King Richard III's complete skeleton

DNA tests prove skeleton found in Leicestershire car park really is King Richard III

528-year mystery of what happened to the body of the last Plantagenet King has been solved

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A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

Who remembers that this week we enter the 150th anniversary year of the end of the American Civil War, asks Robert Fisk
Homeless Veterans appeal: Former soldiers pay their respects to a friend who also served

Homeless Veterans appeal

Former soldiers pay their respects to a friend who also served
Downfall of Dustin 'Screech' Diamond, the 'Saved By The Bell' star charged with bar stabbing

Scarred by the bell

The downfall of the TV star charged with bar stabbing
Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

Security breaches and overhyped start-ups dominated a year in which very little changed (save the size of your phone)
Cuba's golf revolution: But will the revolutionary nation take 'bourgeois' game to its heart?

Will revolutionary Cuba take 'bourgeois' golf to its heart?

Fidel Castro ridiculed the game – but now investment in leisure resort projects is welcome
The Locked Room Mysteries: As a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor Otto Penzler explains the rules of engagement

The Locked Room Mysteries

As a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor explains the rules of engagement
Amy Adams on playing painter Margaret Keane in Tim Burton's Big Eyes

How I made myself Keane

Amy Adams hadn’t wanted to take the role of artist Margaret Keane, because she’d had enough of playing victims. But then she had a daughter, and saw the painter in a new light
Ed Richards: Parting view of Ofcom chief. . . we hate jokes on the disabled

Parting view of Ofcom chief... we hate jokes on the disabled

Bad language once got TV viewers irate, inciting calls to broadcasting switchboards. But now there is a worse offender, says retiring head of the media watchdog, Ed Richards
A look back at fashion in 2014: Wear in review

Wear in review

A look back at fashion in 2014
Ian Herbert: My 10 hopes for sport in 2015. Might just one of them happen?

Ian Herbert: My 10 hopes for sport in 2015

Might just one of them happen?
War with Isis: The West needs more than a White Knight

The West needs more than a White Knight

Despite billions spent on weapons, the US has not been able to counter Isis's gruesome tactics, says Patrick Cockburn
Return to Helmand: Private Davey Graham recalls the day he was shot by the Taliban

'The day I was shot by the Taliban'

Private Davey Graham was shot five times during an ambush in 2007 - it was the first, controversial photograph to show the dangers our soldiers faced in Helmand province
Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Many flyers are failing to claim compensation to which they are entitled, a new survey has found
The stories that defined 2014: From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions

The stories that defined 2014

From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions
Stoke-on-Trent becomes first British city to be classified as 'disaster resilient' by the United Nations

Disaster looming? Now you know where to head...

Which British city has become the first to be awarded special 'resilience' status by the UN?