Jonathan Jones’s top 10 art exhibitions of 2016

From great masterpieces by Caravaggio and Picasso to Georgiana Houghton’s hypnotic rediscovered paintings, this was a year full of stunning blockbusters. From Picasso, to Marcel Duchamp, to Hieronymus Bosch, Caravaggio, AbEx, Girogione, Anselm Kiefer to William Kentridge, read on…!

Time the Turner prize grew up: why it needs to embrace the over-50s

The Turner prize is looking old – and paradoxically, this is down to its obsession with youth. The prize that did so much to make the Young British Artist movement famous in the 1990s has a rule that to be eligible you have to be under the age of 50. That rule is looking increasingly […]

Anish Kapoor is Banned From Buying the World’s Pinkest Paint

Earlier this year it was revealed that sculptor and color-hoarder Anish Kapoor had been given exclusive rights to the blackest black in the world. Called Vantablack it was developed by British company NanoSystem—specialists in nanomaterials—who created it for military and scientific uses. However, after Kapoor contacted the company he was allowed to be the only […]

Yves Klein review – all things blithe, beautiful and blue

Tate Liverpool Klein anticipated pop art with his spirit of mockery and fun, but there was more to the French artist than painting with naked women, as this rare show reveals. Yves Klein was a joker, a thinker and an extreme provocateur. In his dragonfly life – born in 1928, dead of heart failure at […]

Hans-Ulrich Obrist tops list of art world’s most powerful

Artistic director of London’s Serpentine Galleries, dubbed ‘curator who never sleeps’, wins ArtReview’s accolade for second time.  Hans-Ulrich Obrist, the artistic director of London’s Serpentine Galleries dubbed as the “curator who never sleeps”, has topped this year’s ArtReview Power 100 of the most influential people in the art world. It is the second time Obrist […]

Thumbs up to David Shrigley’s fabulously feel-bad fourth plinth

David Shrigley is a mordant and rueful artist. I have a postcard by him that says DEATH in letters that get smaller from left to right, pithily expressing our doom as a diminishing scribble. His take on existence veers between the grimly comic and the cynically absurdist. It is therefore hard to take him entirely […]

David Hockney on what turns a picture into a masterpiece

Rembrandt’s perfect drawing, Caravaggio’s invention of Hollywood lighting, Monet capturing a moment in time. David Hockney and critic Martin Gayford discuss the craft behind the greatest art. David Hockney: The moment you put down two or three marks on a piece of paper, you get relationships. They’ll start to look like something. If you draw […]

Abstract Expressionism review – crammed in a room with the big men of US art

There are beautiful, marvellous and terrifying things in the Royal Academy’s much-trumpeted survey of Abstract Expressionism. What more could one ask in a show including the explosive and tender Jackson Pollock; De Kooning swerving and jumbling and dismembering his frightening figures of women; Rothko’s tangy brightness and trembling, tremulous darkness;Barnett Newman’s zips and planes and […]

Robert Rauschenberg: the leader of American art’s great ménage à trois

The dazzling, haunting ‘combines’ at the heart of Tate Modern’s forthcoming retrospective were part of a private game between Rauschenberg and his peers and sometime lovers, Cy Twombly and Jasper Johns. Robert Rauschenberg’s 1954 work Untitled is an upright wooden box supported by a white, colonial-era table leg over an open stage-like enclosure in which […]

Hoarders or collectors? Our frightened society has forgotten the difference

New York art show The Keeper celebrates our poetic obsession with objects, but how many of us simply surround ourselves with familiar, reassuring rubbish? The exhibition and these reactions suggest a new chapter in the history of collecting. The psychology of the collector seems more traumatised, anxious and defensive. The type of collecting the New […]

Audio-fail: why is so much sound art so bad?

Susan Philipsz and John Cage have shown that the genre has claims to greatness, but two works in Edinburgh betray the emptiness of much sound art. Let’s get this straight, sound art buffs: of course art can be made with sound. It can be made with anything. The first masterpiece of sound art is Marcel […]

Vantablack – Can an artist ever really own a colour?

Anish Kapoor has the exclusive rights to paint using Vantablack, the blackest black that has ever existed – but other artists are keen to use it. Colour is precious. Colour can drive you mad – especially if you are an artist. The colours that artists use can be as expensive as gold – which installationist […]

Tate Modern has finally won me over – with art

Great art museums need great art. That should go without saying, but the new Tate Modern is so architecturally exhilarating that I started to wonder: perhaps you really can have a museum where it doesn’t matter much what’s in it because the experience of walking around is so enjoyable and cool. I love the Switch […]

Antony Gormley: Humans are building ‘a vast termites’ nest’ of greed

Antony Gormley says his first White Cube exhibition in four years, which opens in September, is driven by “more of a sense of urgency” than any other show he has done. From the warming of our climate and the acidification of our seas to cities dominated by skyscrapers – “nothing more than expressions of virile […]

Martin Creed interview: ‘Art is anything used as art by people’

I meet Martin Creed more than a week before his retrospective What’s the point of it? opens at the Hayward. The gallery is full of 25 years’ worth of improbable, witty, uplifting art; I am especially gladdened by a wall covered in 1,000 prints of broccoli. But the show is not ready yet: the atmosphere […]

First look: inside the Switch House – Tate Modern’s power pyramid

Among the shafts of luxury flats sprouting up along the south bank of the Thames, from Battersea to Bermondsey, there is one new tower unlike the others. It is made of brick, not glass, and stands as a squat, truncated pyramid, twisting as it rises. Punctured only by thin slit windows, Tate Modern’s new extension […]

Martin Creed @ Hauser & Wirth’s Somerset Gallery

Immaculate in a grey suit, Martin Creed strides towards me in the car park at Durslade Farm, home of Hauser & Wirth’s Somerset gallery. He could be a businessman out on his lunch break on a spring day. Then I notice the spatters and whiplashes of paint all over his clothes, the splodges of colour […]

Herzog and De Meuron: Tate Modern’s architects on their radical new extension

Jacques Herzog, the more talkative half of the pair of boyhood friends who founded the architectural practice Herzog & De Meuron, is worried about the world. “The things based on the five senses that we like so much, all these values – that we treat people well. They are in danger. There is such a […]

Raw meat, live sex and snakes: the dangerous art of Carolee Schneemann

“Don’t bring your underaged children or grandchildren. Don’t bring your grandmother or other relatives. Don’t bring your out-of-town guests. The current exhibit is awful. I don’t know what it is, but it isn’t art.” A new book about Carolee Schneemann begins with this warning from a visitor to one of her exhibitions. This review may […]

Ulay v Marina: how art’s power couple went to war

If you do nothing else on this site, watch this Video! A bearded old man with a weathered face stands in pink knickers. As part of his performance A Skeleton in the Closet, he is writing numbers on the wall of Amsterdam’s Stedelijk Museum: 252, 253, 288, 289. The lucky spectators who made it in to […]