Rackstraw Downes: Some Painters

Dec 4, 2012 12:14AM

Filmed in Presidio, Texas in late 2010, painter Rackstraw Downes describes why he views the work of some long-deceased painters to be relevant to his own contemporary practice. Paintings by such artists are shown including Claude Lorrain's "Sunrise" (1646-47), Jacob van Ruisdael's "Wheat Fields" (1670), and J.M.W. Turner's "The Burning of the Houses of Lords and Commons" (1834-35). Despite not using the same techniques as these painters, Downes seeks out their work because he considers it "useful," "provocative," and "like challenges."

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CREDITS: Producer: Ian Forster. Consulting Producer: Wesley Miller & Nick Ravich. Interview: Susan Sollins. Camera: Bob Elfstrom. Sound: Ray Day. Editor: Morgan Riles. Artwork Courtesy: Rackstraw Downes, Philadelphia Museum of Art, The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Theme Music: Peter Foley.