The War of Troy Tapestry

In this episode, we’ll be visiting The War of Troy tapestry at The Victoria and Albert Museum, London. Welcome to Art, Culture & Books with me, Anthony King. Woven from a combination of wool and silk, this impressive tapestry spans over four meters in height and extends to a length of seven meters. Originally, it constituted one piece among a series of 11 hangings recognized as The Trojan War tapestries. When exhibited collectively, these hangings, if laid side by side, would have reached an astonishing length exceeding 100 meters. The production of multiple sets of The Trojan War tapestries was undertaken, finding a place of prominence within the palaces of some of Europe’s most influential individuals. The War of Troy tapestry is from 1475-1490, Tournai,

Baron Empain Palace in Heliopolis, Cairo, Egypt

In this episode, we’ll be visiting the Baron Empain Palace in Heliopolis, Cairo, Egypt. Welcome to Art, Culture & Books with me, Anthony King. The Baron Empain Palace better known as “The Hindu Palace” is a distinctive and historic Hindu temple inspired mansion in Heliopolis, a suburb north-east of central Cairo, Egypt. It was founded by Edward Empain, a Belgian businessman who was awarded the title of “Baron” by the King of Belgium. The palace was designed by an architect named Alexandre Marcel inspired mostly by the Hindu temples of South India and was built between 1907 and 1911, in reinforced concrete. Heliopolis style is an early 20th-century architectural style developed in the new suburb of Heliopolis. Édouard Empain arrived in Egypt in January 1904,

Tour of the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam

In this episode, I’ll be taking you on a little tour of the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam which I visited in 2023. Welcome to Art, Culture & Books with me, Anthony King. Situated in Amsterdam South, close to the Rijksmuseum, the Van Gogh Museum is dedicated to showcasing the artworks of Vincent van Gogh and his contemporaries. Opening its doors on 2 June 1973, the museum holds the world’s most extensive collection of Van Gogh’s paintings and drawings. Vincent van Gogh’s demise in 1890 led to his unsold works passing into the possession of his brother, Theo. Following Theo’s death just six months later, the collection fell to his widow, Johanna. In an effort to promote awareness of Vincent’s art, Johanna sold many of

Niobe Head at the Egyptian Civilization museum in Cairo

In this episode, we’ll be visiting the Niobe Head at the Egyptian Civilization museum in Cairo. Welcome to Art, Culture & Books with me, Anthony King. This 2nd century AD marble head was found in Luxor. Achilles referred to her in Homer’s Iliad, recounting her arrogant pride. In response, Leto punished her by sending Apollo and Artemis to eliminate all her offspring. Subsequently, her children remained unburied for nine days, during which she refrained from consuming any food. She was also mentioned in Shakespeare’s “Hamlet”. The museum label tells us: “Niobe was the daughter of Tantalus, king of Phrygia in Asia Minor, and the wife of Amphion of Thebes, who founded the Greek city of Thebes and built its walls, the Greeks considered her a

Svalbard Museum and Longyearbyen

Today I’ll be taking you on a video and photographic tour of the Svalbard Museum and Longyearbyen. Welcome to “Art, Culture & Books” with me Anthony King. Svalbard, previously known as Spitsbergen is a Norwegian archipelago situated in the Arctic Ocean. Its capital is Longyearbyen, positioned on the west coast of the main island. In the 17th and 18th centuries, whalers navigating the far north utilized these islands as a base. Subsequently, the archipelago faced abandonment. Coal mining commenced in the early 20th century, leading to the establishment of permanent communities like Pyramiden and Barentsburg. The Svalbard Treaty of 1920 acknowledges Norwegian sovereignty, while the Norwegian Svalbard Act of 1925 formally integrates Svalbard into the Kingdom of Norway. This treaty designates Svalbard as both a

Witches Going to their Sabbath by Luis Ricardo Falero

In this episode, we’ll be visiting Witches going to their Sabbath by Luis Ricardo Falero which I saw in Munich. Welcome to Art, Culture & Books with me, Anthony King. Luis Ricardo Falero was born May 23, 1851 and died December 7, 1896 in Spain. His focus in art was primarily on female nudes and depictions of mythological, orientalist, and fantasy scenes. The predominant medium for his work was oil on canvas. His nude work is some of the most impressive, realistic yet quite strange art you will even see. It’s worth noting that in England, Falero occasionally referred to himself as the Duke of Labranzano, which was completely made up and didn’t exist at all. Witches going to their Sabbath also known as The

Tour of the Sphinx at the Pyramids of Giza

Today I’ll be taking you on a little tour of the Sphinx at the Pyramids of Giza. Yesterday I gave you a tour around the Pyramids. Today it’s the turn of the mighty Sphinx. Welcome to “Art, Culture & Books” with me Anthony King. On the Giza Plateau, situated on the west bank of the Nile in Giza, Egypt, the Great Sphinx stands as a limestone statue depicting a reclining creature with the head of a human and the body of a lion. Facing directly from west to east, it is believed to represent the pharaoh Khafre, and its original shape, carved from bedrock, has been restored with layers of limestone blocks. Archaeological evidence indicates that the Sphinx, dating back to the Old Kingdom, is

Tour of the Pyramids of Giza

In this episode, I’ll be taking you on a tour of the Pyramids of Giza. Welcome to Art, Culture & Books with me, Anthony King. The mysterious Pyramids of Giza are some of the most magnificent structures ever created. I’ve visited the Pyramids of Giza four times in my life and the last time I visited in 2023 I spent almost the full day on the plateau and contemplated what I was seeing and really tried to take in the experience. I also filmed and walked right out into the desert and I mean past the desert observation area … to get the full view you have to walk through the sands and off the pavement, literally into the desert but the view and experience

The Clepsydra of Karnak at the National Museum of Egyptian Civilization

In this episode, we’ll be visiting the ancient Egyptian Clepsydra of Karnak at the National Museum of Egyptian Civilization in Cairo. Welcome to Art, Culture & Books with me, Anthony King. This incredible alabaster Clepsydra, from 1391-1353 BC is thought to be the oldest ever found in history. The Karnak Clepsydra features 12 intricately carved columns, each accompanied by corresponding holes representing the hours of the night. A minute hole at the centre of the base allowed water to flow, emerging outside beneath the depiction of a seated baboon. Its design prioritized independence from weather conditions, ensuring consistent timekeeping even with poor visibility of the sun or stars. Determining the time involved observing the water level within the basin and referencing the nearest hole. The