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Art: 21 - Art in the Twenty-First Century, Season Six

Marina Abramovic , Ai Weiwei , .  |  NR |  DVD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Marina Abramovic, Ai Weiwei, David Altmejd, El Anatsui, Lynda Benglis
  • Directors: .
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: PBS
  • DVD Release Date: May 1, 2012
  • Run Time: 240 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0077PBPNM
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #66,635 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features

None.

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Season 6 of the Peabody Award-winning series "Art in the Twenty-First Century includes featured artists Marina Abramovic, Ai Weiwei, David Altmejd, El Anatsui, assume vivid astro focus, Lynda Benglis, Rackstraw Downes, Glenn Ligon, Robert Mangold, Catherine Opie, Mary Reid Kelley, Sarah Sze, and Tabaimo.

Amazon.com

The sixth season of PBS's Peabody-winning series showcases 13 visual artists, including internationally renowned talents Marina Abramović and Ai Weiwei, both of whom have inspired full-length documentaries (and have graced New York City with landmark sculptures and installations). Arranged by theme, the four episodes--change, boundaries, history, and balance--allow subjects to share thoughts about their work while setting up shows and working on a variety of projects. In "Change," Los Angeles photographer Catherine Opie takes portraits of her working-class neighbors and completes a corporate commission with personal significance, Nigerian-based multimedia artist El Anatsui talks about his roots in Ghana and creates undulating sheets of metal from bottle caps, and Chinese sculptor Ai speaks about his striking wood and metal constructions, but probation forbids him from discussing his 2011 arrest on political grounds, so his assistants fill in some of the details. In "History," Yugoslavia-born conceptual artist Abramović credits her stoic communist parents for her "physical endurance and extreme willpower." Indeed, she doesn't appear to move once during the performance she contributes. Other subjects include Japanese animator Tabaimo, British-born realist painter Rackstraw Downes, and American filmmaker Mary Reid Kelley, who incorporates family members into her playful pieces. Simply watching these artists work with neon, wire, plaster, and other media provides the primary characteristic of a program that eschews traditional narration. Art in the Twenty-First Century may be short on biographical detail, but the insights into the creative process represent a significant compensating factor. --Kathleen C. Fennessy

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
(14)
4.5 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
27 of 27 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not on par with the previous seasons September 23, 2012
By Tim T
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I am a college professor for 18 years that teaches a class called "Contemporary Art." I have found the art:21 series a wealth of information to share with my students about what is going on in the world of art in the 21st century. The artists chosen for series six is for the most part the typical diverse panoply of artists getting time in the market now, which was fine.

What I will gripe about is the producer and editor's choice in how they present each artist. It seems they themselves were trying to be "artistic" rather than choosing to educate the public about contemporary art. We see Ai Weiwei pieces on the screen with no explanation as to what they are about or what he did, We are given no history of Mary Reid Kelly and her various projects and only follow one, and I understand the motivation to have Marina Abramovic gaze at us for over twenty minutes, but it isn't helpful when I'm trying to educate students about her projects and the significance of her work.

My fear is that the producers of art:21 season 6 have perpetrated the myth of "Oh those artists, they're just so opaque and odd," rather than to use this series as a venue to educate and include a wider audience into what is going on in the art world.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Art21 December 17, 2012
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Each time another dvd from this series comes out I'm there. It's interesting to have the present day artist talk about their work process and to have incite into what makes them work and grow.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best yet! December 4, 2012
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I come to view this excellent artist documentary series as a reference resource as much as entertainment. Can't wait for season 7!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent November 27, 2012
By charles
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Enjoyed it.. Very good reflective views of artists lives and works. The whole Art 21 DVD series is worth the time and money.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great! But, listening to some of the artists.. July 23, 2012
I Love this series, but there are SOOO many artists out there doing so many unique things and ideas. It is a pity so few very original ones are celebrated. I fear Art is going the way of Pop music.

I am diverging from the title of my review.

A lot of the words the artist use are the same. The Ideas for each artist are different, but the way each artist describes: so many of them use the same cliche explanations. 'the materials take on a life of there own' 'I am just a guide' 'I don't think about the viewer.'

Do not get me wrong.. there is goodness in what a lot of them say, and some of them, like Ai WeiWei, are just amazing.

2 cents
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3.0 out of 5 stars "Why was it not interesting?", states this Art 21 Fan October 1, 2014
By D. F.
Format:DVD
Background: I own all the seasons and I think I have seen all of the artists except for a few (some things I just won't watch). I use these videos to help High School students see Art that is being made now and get a feel of the current "Art World" Philosophy.

Overall, I thought it was weak as far as the series goes. I have included a little information that may help explain my rating.

Change: Fairly strong and showcases Artist with deep Social cultural impact. Artists: Catherine Opie (personal), El Anatsui, Ai Weiwei

Boundaries: varied for me with mainly a thumbs down... Tabaimo (Good), Assume Vivid Astro Focus (interesting art, ok segment), David Altmejd (boring with 50/50 enjoyment of Art), Lynda Benglis (wanted to appreciate it, but couldn't)

History: completely hit an miss, mostly miss: Glenn Ligon (good art, extremely boring segment), Mary Reid Kelley (entertaining and great), Marina Abramović (may be good Art, but Bad, Bad, Bad Art 21 segment, there is a reason it was place at the end of the episode. If it was at the bringing you may turn it off)

Balance: Slow but thoughtful: Rackstraw Downes (great, one if not the only realistic painter shown in series) Robert Mangold (repetitive art but informative), Sarah Sze (nice public work, average)

Hopefully that explains why I think it was average for the series: Art was ok, the segments were just not interesting. I will still use it, but very little was enjoyable for me.
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Format:Amazon Instant Video|Verified Purchase
My only complaint about Art 21 is that I wish the individual segments were longer for the artists I really like! When Art 21 brings us into artists studio and lets us see them in the process of making their work, this is invaluable to me, as an artist myself. I think that the series is a treat for artists and makes art more understandable to non-artists because it lets people get an inkling as to how artists think about the work they make and how much care goes into it. Art is misunderstood by so many and in this era of the erroneous belief that "everyone is an artist" we get to see that not everyone can or will devote the continued thought and effort required to make art. PBS should be praised (and emulated) for undertaking this series. It is well worth watching!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Supporting PBS
Although I'm not a huge fan of what has become a 21st century obsession with Conceptual Art, I am thrilled to watch this intelligent and sophisticated look at art, creativity and... Read more
Published 4 days ago by Julie P. Weeks
4.0 out of 5 stars Art21 Review
This series is fantastic and this volume did not disappoint. I have been
following it for some time now. And have watched other seasons. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Patti K. Miller
5.0 out of 5 stars Great series...
This whole series is just awesome. I first caught it on PBS and was hooked. It's so cool listening to artists and their mindset as well as projects they done. Read more
Published 11 months ago by Todd C. Young
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best One Yet!
The variety of content across the series has been impressive. This release is a near-perfect combination of artists and superior production values. Read more
Published 18 months ago by Anand
5.0 out of 5 stars Art 21 is always great!
Art 21 is always great! I love seeing and hearing from the artists in the video series. I own them all.
Published 20 months ago by Leila
5.0 out of 5 stars Art:21 Season Six
Great DVD! Some people argue that the Art:21 films show arrogant and self centered artists. I haven't had that feeling yet with the ones I've watched. Read more
Published 21 months ago by Tatsuya
5.0 out of 5 stars bought
Bought this for my husband. He owns all the other Seasons so this completes his set for now. He is an artist and was very pleased with this.
Published 22 months ago by T. Gaskin
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