art history

Smart Secrets of Great Paintings episode 6 - Paolo Veronese

Smart Secrets of Great Paintings episode 6 – Paolo Veronese

Smart Secrets of Great Paintings episode 6 – Paolo Veronese: In “The Wedding at Cana”, Paolo Veronese transposes the biblical tale of Christ’s first miracle to the scene of a sumptuous Venetian banquet. This documentary explores the historical context of 16th century Venice, a wealthy and politically stable city in which artists such as Veronese, Titian, and Jacobo Tintoretto were […]

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Simon Schama's History of Now episode 2

Simon Schama’s History of Now episode 2

Simon Schama’s History of Now episode 2: Simon Schama explores the artists at the vanguard of the fight for equality in the decades after the Second World War. He revisits his childhood as a Jewish boy in Southend and his memories of seeing James Baldwin debate William Buckley at the Cambridge Union, explores the story behind Nina Simone’s classic civil

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Smart Secrets of Great Paintings episode 5

Smart Secrets of Great Paintings episode 5 – Jean Fouquet

Smart Secrets of Great Paintings episode 5 – Jean Fouquet: With a tiny and delicate paintbrush, Jean Fouquet adds the golden threads of a tentative humanism to “The Martyrdom of Saint Apollonia” (circa 1450) and unveils a glimmer of the modern era, crouching behind the horizon of the Middle Ages. This film analyzes the illumination for clues of what Fouquet

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Smart Secrets of Great Paintings episode 4

Smart Secrets of Great Paintings episode 4 – Quentin Metsys

Smart Secrets of Great Paintings episode 4 – Quentin Metsys: 16th century Antwerp was like 1950s New York. The city of craftsmen and fishermen at the entrance to the North Sea became a leading finance hub, facilitated by European exploration and new trade routes. This work by Quentin Metsys is a subtle criticism of that world and its era, warning

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Smart Secrets of Great Paintings episode 3 - Diego Velazquez

Smart Secrets of Great Paintings episode 3 – Diego Velazquez

Smart Secrets of Great Paintings episode 3 – Diego Velazquez: In the mid-17th century, Madrid experienced its Golden Age. The Royal Alcazar of Madrid, a legacy of the Muslim sovereignty that had dominated the region for a long time, became the residence of the royal family and the centre of the Spanish court. Diego Velasquez’ canvas plunges us into the

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Smart Secrets of Great Paintings episode 2 - Georges Seurat

Smart Secrets of Great Paintings episode 2 – Georges Seurat

Smart Secrets of Great Paintings episode 2 – Georges Seurat: At the end of the 19th century, Asnieres resembled a seaside resort. The cheering crowd that came to attend the regattas animated the banks of the Seine, and the rowing club was always full. When he painted his canvas, Georges Seurat understood that his current era was totally turned towards

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Smart Secrets of Great Paintings episode 1 - Gustave Courbet

Smart Secrets of Great Paintings episode 1 – Gustave Courbet

Smart Secrets of Great Paintings episode 1 – Gustave Courbet: Paris shone brightly in the second half of the 19th century, with its fashionable restaurants, and its cabarets and theatres, which provided the spectacle of a carefree society. The industrial revolution produced wealth, and fortunes were amassed and lost. Gustave Courbet’s work is politically involved and provocative. It reveals his

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The Story of Welsh Art episode 3

The Story of Welsh Art episode 3

The Story of Welsh Art episode 3: In this final episode, Huw Stephens’s journey begins at the dawn of the 20th century with the artists who broke with tradition and depicted Wales in radical new ways. In Snowdonia, he learns how Augustus John and JD Innes led the way, obsessively painting the landscape with a freedom and vibrancy that still

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The Story of Welsh Art episode 2

The Story of Welsh Art episode 2

The Story of Welsh Art episode 2: Scrambling up the side of one of Wales’s highest and most rugged mountains, Huw Stephens retraces the steps of Richard Wilson, an 18th-century artist who changed the course of art history. Bringing harmony and beauty to a terrain previously dismissed as ‘God’s rubbish tip’, he transformed the way Wales was seen by the

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The Story of Welsh Art episode 1

The Story of Welsh Art episode 1

The Story of Welsh Art episode 1: Huw Stephens explores what has long been a missing piece in the cultural story of Britain and indeed Wales itself – the story of Welsh art. Huw starts his journey on the island of Anglesey where he steps inside a prehistoric burial chamber to witness Welsh art in its earliest form. He sees

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The High Art of the Low Countries episode 2

The High Art of the Low Countries episode 2

The High Art of the Low Countries episode 2: Andrew Graham-Dixon looks at how the seemingly peaceful countries of Holland and Belgium – famous for their tulips and windmills, mussels and chips – were in fact forged in a crucible of conflict and division. He examines how a period of economic boom driven for the first time by a burgeoning

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