50 greatest arts videos on YouTube

November 13, 2008

Courtesy of the Guardian here are the 50 greatest videos on YouTube. There are some real finds in here including

Katharine Hepburn gives a rare interview, 1973
‘Can’t we have a stationary table?’ thunders Katharine Hepburn, 66, to one of the producers on The Dick Cavett Show. Hepburn rarely did interviews. When she did, she wanted it just so. In this case, in prep for the actual recording, Hepburn went on set to veto a wobbly table (‘nail it down!’) and joke about the garishly russet-coloured carpet: ‘Gee whiz. Put a rug over it. Who’s idea was that?’

Bill Viola’s The Reflecting Pool, 1977-1979
American video-artist Viola has carved out a very definite niche: ultra slow-motion films, imbued with an almost painterly quality, and often tackling twin issues of mortality and spirituality. This early film fixes on a woodland pool and a man frozen mid-air over it. With intimations of birth and death, it’s ultimately both creepy and moving.

Jackson Pollock drip paints outside his East Hampton home, 1951
Though German-born photographer Hans Namuth didn’t much rate Pollock’s work, he was fascinated by the man. Having taken over 500 photographs of him already, he turned to film. His resulting documentary captures the artist dressed head to toe in black, a cigarette hanging from his lip, drip painting on to glass. Best of all is Pollock’s curiously droning narration: ‘The method of painting is a natural growth out of a need.’