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Robert Hughes is still the model for any art critic - particularly one from his resentful home country

By Sebastian Smee   August 2004

Robert Hughes returned to the fray in July with a one-off television programme, The New Shock of the New. Refreshing as it was to watch an arts programme that voiced opinions – as opposed to the more soothing contemporary milieu of blanded-out, jazzed-up “education” – the show had a sad, not quite fully formed aura about it.

Whose fault was this? Was it Hughes himself, who broke almost every bone in his body in a car crash in outback Australia several years ago, so that he hobbles about these days with a walking stick looking as if he were permanently…

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