Arts and Entertainment

The national appetite for art and art spaces seems insatiable. When Tate Modern was unveiled in 2000, two million annual visits were expected; today more than five million visitors a year pour through its Thames-side doors.

The Secret History Of: The Barcelona chair

Such is the iconic status of the Barcelona chair that it has its own page in the Barcelona Yellow Pages. Not only that but it is one of the oldest modern classics still around. It was designed in 1929 for the Spanish Royal Family by the German designer Ludwig Mies van der Rohe.

Alice Jones: Gallery deserves praise for visitor-calming measures

Some more late-night openings and more informative, free hand-outs would also ease congestion

National Gallery to reduce Da Vinci crowding



The National Gallery is limiting visitor numbers to a forthcoming exhibition to stop it from being "overrun".

Jan Gossaert's Renaissance, National Gallery, London

The man who brought the Renaissance to Flanders was drawn to Eden, yet there is something of Mickey Duck about his work

Jan Gossaert's Renaissance at The National Gallery

Jan Gossaert is hardly a household name. However, the Old Master, known in his early 16th Century heyday as Jan Mabuse, is widely credited with changing the course of Flemish art, taking the tradition of Jan van Eyck and melding it with Italianate techniques.

Dylan Jones: 'The best meal you’ll eat this week will be in a museum'

The best meal you'll eat this week won't be in a bistro, a brasserie or a grill room, it will be in a museum. The Restaurant at the Royal Academy finally opened last month, and it's a hit. It was opened by Oliver Peyton, who also looks after the restaurants in the National Gallery, the Wallace Collection and Kew Gardens, as well as running Inn the Park (in St James's Park) and the Peyton and Byrne bakery.

Google Street View offers art gallery tours

Google's Street View technology is being taken indoors for the first time - into some of the world's most famous art galleries.

After Gauguin, can galleries cope with crowds?

Tourists flocking from around the world to London's art exhibitions are fuelling a surge in "gallery rage" as the art world's connoisseurs bemoan overcrowding at an elite list of blockbuster shows.

The Young Vermeer, National Gallery of Scotland, Edinburgh

This tiny show of just three paintings, hung in a small, chapel-like rotunda in Edinburgh's National Gallery, is of great importance. Vermeer of Delft painted little. He came to fame late. Unlike Rembrandt and Gerrit Dou, he was not celebrated during his lifetime, and it was not until the middle of the 19th century that his works were rescued from oblivion, and began to be valued and evaluated properly. He produced about 60 works during his lifetime, of which just 36 survive. Given that he had a working life of approximately 20 years, this amounts to about three paintings a year.

This arty stocking-filler will put you in the picture

About Britain

Bridget Riley: Still on top form

Bridget Riley is the queen of modern British art, says Adrian Hamilton, and yet her work is enriched by her traditionalist and joyful regard for the masters

Major museums blocked from using reserves totalling £285m

Tens of millions of pounds held in the reserve accounts of Britain's major museums – much of it donated by private donations and bequests – is frozen by the Treasury, despite the arts being in the midst of the biggest funding crisis in a generation.

My Secret Life: John Simpson, journalist, 66

My parents were ... an unsuited couple, really. My father was very outgoing and witty and demonstrative; my mother was very quiet and gentle. My mother said my father was a monster – which he was, but only in the nicest possible way. When I was six, they split up and I had to choose between them. I bizarrely chose my father, which was absolutely unheard of in the Fifties. I miss him every single day.

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