Private Life of a Masterpiece

Private Life of a Masterpiece is a BBC arts documentary series that tells the stories behind great works of art reaching from the Renaissance to modern art. David by Michelangelo, The Scream by Edvard Munch, The Third of May 1808 by Francisco Goya, The Night Watch by Rembrandt van Rijn, Sunflowers by Vincent van Gogh, Les Demoiselles d'Avignon by Pablo Picasso, The Annunciation by Jan van Eyck, ... The Art of Painting by Johannes Vermeer. For behind the beautiful canvases and sculptures are tales of political revolution, wartime escapes, massive ego clashes, social scandal, financial wrangling and shocking violence. The series reveals the full and fascinating stories behind famous works of art, not just how they came to be created, but also how they influenced others and came to have a life of their own in the modern world.

Episode 10 - James McNeill Whistler: Whistler's Mother

The stark portrait, mainly in greys and black, that James McNeill Whistler painted of his mother is now a picture that is widely lampooned as a portrait of a prim Victorian lady. She is shown smoking reefers, wearing trainers, having a tatoo. But Whistler's approach was revolutionary in its time, wholly departing from the Victorian tradition of sentimental narrative painting. His relationship with his mother was also an intriguing study in contrasts.

Related Links
Whistler's Mother
Arrangement in Grey and Black No.1, famous under its colloquial name Whistler's Mother, is a painting in oils on canvas created by the American-born painter James McNeill Whistler in 1871.

Go to Private Life of a Masterpiece Home or watch other episodes:

Episode 01 - Michelangelo: David
Episode 02 - Edvard Munch: The Scream
Episode 03 - Edouard Manet: Le dejeuner sur l'herbe
Episode 04 - Diego Velazquez: The Rokeby Venus
Episode 05 - Auguste Rodin: The Kiss
Episode 06 - Francisco Goya: The Third of May 1808
Episode 07 - Auguste Renoir: Bal au moulin de la Galette, Montmartre
Episode 08 - Rembrandt van Rijn: The Night Watch
Episode 09 - Sandro Botticelli: La Primavera
Episode 10 - James McNeill Whistler: Whistler's Mother
Episode 11 - Vincent van Gogh: Sunflowers
Episode 12 - Edgar Degas: La Petite Danseuse de Quatorze Ans
Episode 13 - Pablo Picasso: Les Demoiselles d'Avignon
Episode 14 - Katsushika Hokusai: The Great Wave
Episode 15 - Georges Seurat: A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte
Episode 16 - Gustav Klimt: The Kiss
Episode 17 - Eugene Delacroix: Liberty Leading the People
Episode 18 - Johannes Vermeer: The Art of Painting
Episode 19 - Paolo Uccello: The Battle of San Romano
Episode 20 - Leonardo da Vinci: The Last Supper
Episode 21 - Salvador Dali: Christ of Saint John of the Cross
Episode 22 - Piero della Francesca: The Resurrection
Episode 23 - Jan van Eyck: The Annunciation
Episode 24 - Pieter Bruegel the Elder: Census At Bethlehem
Episode 25 - Paul Gauguin: God's Child
Episode 26 - Filippo Lippi: The Adoration of the Christ Child