Firewood is more than a middle-class accessory

In the Transylvanian winter, firewood is fundamental to survival but that only adds to its joy, says Stephen McGrath

Winter notebook: sailing the English Channel

This narrow stretch of water teams with ships in winter and possesses a language and character all of its own

Alter egos: from Bowie and Beyoncé to Marcel Duchamp

Artists across the decades have used alter egos to bring their art to life from Charlie Chaplin’s Tramp to Grayson Perry’s Claire

A 21st century Grand Tour of European art

Here are a series of weekend breaks to Europe’s finest galleries to reinvent the Georgian grand tour for the modern era

Why men like me are fed up with dating apps

The dating app meat market is turning us all into merchandise

Authors’ pseudonyms: from Agatha Christie to JK Rowling

pseudonyms give authors the freedom to become as malleable as their characters

Sexless cars: why no man will ever pull in a Prius

Cars are extensions of their owners, and today’s are the automotive equivalent of abstinence

Tintin turns 90: the secret to his appeal

One-dimensional and decidedly un-PC, Hergé’s Tintin is a blank slate onto which we project our own desire for adventure

Oscars 2019: nominations and predictions

From Netflix to #metoo: the politics of the Oscars race are far from straight-forward

Britain’s little capitals of culture

Swap the city for one of the many small British towns with thriving art and food scenes – from Stroud to Berwick Upon Tweed

The Marvelous Mrs Maisel and the matriarchy

Gwen Smith on why finding a mentor like Midge’s Susie could be the best thing you do all year

How to choose a piece of art for your home

From framing to feature walls, Deborah Allan shows you how to find art to suit all spaces – big and small

The Best Talks and Debates on the Internet

From Jordan Peterson to Grayson Perry, we explore the internet’s most free-thinking talks and debates

20 New Words for the New Year

From Globo and Schmoo to Gaslighting, philologist Adam Jacot de Boinod shares his top 20 words for 2019

A Russian theatre giant brays against artistic repression

Anatoly Vasiliev’s productions were too radical for the Russian authorities. Now, he’s turned to cinema – and donkeys – to get his message across

Aidan O’Brien: the trainer who is leading the pack

The Irishman is a deserved winner of the International Federation of Horseracing Authorities international award

A weekend retreat for keen pianists (and absolute beginners)

Finchocks, a former piano museum in Kent, is now a luxurious destination for people keen to brush up on their key skills

How the childhood home of a great artist was left to rot

Romanian authorities have failed to protect the house where Constantin Brancusi grew up

The Kinks’ misunderstood masterpiece

Village Green Preservation Society is not the document of English cultural conservatism it is often described as

The best exhibitions to see this autumn

From Mantegna and Bellini to Charlie Brown and Snoopy

Nine books to read this autumn

The best new novels and non-fiction to curl up on the sofa with

Sean Scully: ‘Fatherhood has given my art a new lease of life’

The prolific artist on how doing the school run in his 70s has brought a fresh dynamism to his work

London’s best art fairs

Where to go if you want to buy – or just gawp at – some fine art

The great second places

Mark Mason celebrates the people and things forgotten by history for not quite finishing first