Da Vinci’s dark side, our need for nature and a big pinch of salt – the week in art

exhibition of the week

The Ugly Duchess: Beauty and Satire in the Renaissance
The National Gallery examines the grotesque humor of the Renaissance and reveals the dark side of Leonardo da Vinci.
• National Gallery, London, from March 16th to June 11th

also show

Empowering Art: Indigenous Creativity and Activism from the Northwest Coast of North America
Contemporary draws on the great indigenous art traditions of the Pacific Coast that predate the United States.
• Sainsbury Centre, Norwich, from 12 March to 30 July

Nastja Säde Rönkko
Award-winning Finnish video art about salt and its mythologies, from blood to seawater.
• Beaconsfield, London, from March 16th to May 6th

Cross-species entanglements
Our interaction with the rest of nature is explored by Vivian Caccuri, Keira Greene, nabbteeri, and others.
• Site Gallery, Sheffield, from 16 March to 28 May.

deep horizons
Tony Robinson, Dr. Julietta Singh, sea pilot Geoff Taylor and artists Liliane Lijn and Fiona Crisp are among the curators looking to revisit the Mima collection.
• Mima, Middlesbrough, until June 18th.

picture of the week

Work in Progress by Jann Haworth and Liberty Blake (2021-22)
Inspired by the Sgt Pepper album cover, Work in Progress is a seven panel mural (three shown here) depicting 130 British women from Boudicca to Mary Beard. Commissioned by the National Portrait Gallery as part of its three-year project to expand female representation in its collection, it will double the number of post-1900 women on the walls of the galleries to 48% when the buildings reopen the following June after an extensive refurbishment. Read the whole story here.

What we learned

A rare painting by Brueghel the Younger has been found behind a door in a French family home

A Ming Dynasty Buddha found in Australia could rewrite history

The master of modernism, David Chipperfield, almost failed architecture school

The California desert is filled with sculptural wonders

The band, once known as Exit Through the Gift Shop, sells her Banksy

Harewood House, near Leeds, has commissioned a portrait of actor and author David Harewood

A Henry Moore fund will pay the bills of sculptors struggling with the cost of living

The Picasso Museum in Paris has reinvented itself to do justice to the artist’s tarnished reputation

Treasures from new digs show Pompeii isn’t frozen in time

Britain could still lose Joshua Reynolds’ magnificent portrait of Omai

James McBey was the Rembrandt of Aberdeenshire

En Liang Khong has won this year’s Observer/Anthony Burgess Prize for Art Journalism

Typist Artist Pirate King is a generous portrait of neglected artist Audrey Amiss

masterpiece of the week

The Adoration of the Magiattributed Hieronymus Bosch

The Adoration of the Magi, attributed to Hieronymus Bosch, c.1515. Photo: Alamy

The fantastic visionary spirit of Bosch blazes from this excellent early copy of one of his most sinister works. The original is in the Prado in Madrid, but you could mistake this version for a painting by the mysterious artist from ‘s-Hertogenbosch. It’s a surreal masterpiece, unlike the portraits and landscapes elsewhere in the mansion in which it hangs. The distant city resembles something out of a sci-fi film or game, its bulging buildings alien and bizarrely organic. A lifelike African king is depicted in front of the stable, perhaps based on someone Bosch met in the world port of Antwerp. The Rotting Stable has a collapsing tragic comedy. The half-naked Antichrist looks at the newborn child from the inside. Everything is completely changed in this apocalyptic worship.
• Petworth House, National Trust

Do not forget

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