Episodes

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Neri Oxman and the Endless House20191017

Art critic Alastair Sooke, in the company of some of the leading creatives of our age, continues his deep dive into the stunning works in the Museum of Modern Art's collection, whilst exploring what it really means “to see” art.

Today's edition features Professor Neri Oxman from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She's a world expert in combining art and architecture with biology, computing, and materials engineering. Little wonder perhaps she chooses Frederick Kiesler’s design for called Endless House - an organic structure that was never built.

Producer: Paul Kobrak

30 of the world's sharpest minds choose a work from MoMA's collection. How do they see it?

Essays from leading writers on arts, history, philosophy, science, religion and beyond.

Starry Night and Janna Levin20191014

Art critic Alastair Sooke, in the company of some of the leading creatives of our age, takes us on a deep dive into the stunning works in the Museum of Modern Art's collection, whilst exploring what it really means “to see” art.

Leading cultural figures in the series include Grammy- and Emmy-award-winning Hollywood actor and comedian Steve Martin, the author of the New York Times best-selling essay collection Roxane Gay, one of the founders of minimalism – composer Steve Reich and stand-up comedian Margaret Cho. Each episode introduces us to an important art work in the collection, but asks how our own perspective affects our appreciation of the piece.

So, how does a jazz pianist see Modrian’s Broadway Boogie Woogie? How does one of the first black women to write for Marvel comics see the difficult truths Kara Walker’s sweeping image of African-American history? What does a top fashion designer decode from the clothes painted by an artist in Harlem in the 1930s?

But we start with possibly the most iconic piece in MoMA's collection - Starry Night by Vincent Van Gogh. Prof Janna Levin is one of America's leading cosmologists; her specialism is understanding black holes. How does she see Van Gogh's night sky, painted from inside an asylum as he battled mental illness?

Producer: Paul Kobrak

30 of the world's sharpest minds choose a work from MoMA's collection. How do they see it?

Essays from leading writers on arts, history, philosophy, science, religion and beyond.

Steve Martin and the Lonely Synchromists20191015

Art critic Alastair Sooke, in the company of some of the leading creatives of our age, continues his deep dive into the stunning works in the Museum of Modern Art's collection, whilst exploring what it really means “to see” art.

Today's edition features award-winning comedian and actor Steve Martin - he finds two "lonely" works that speak to him; Stanton Macdonald-Wright’s Synchromy and Morgan Russell’s Color Form Synchromy.

Producer: Paul Kobrak

30 of the world's sharpest minds chose a work from MoMA's collection - how do they see it?

Essays from leading writers on arts, history, philosophy, science, religion and beyond.

Steven Pinker and Picasso20191018

Art critic Alastair Sooke, in the company of some of the leading creatives of our age, continues his deep dive into the stunning works in the Museum of Modern Art's collection, whilst exploring what it really means “to see” art.

Today's edition features Harvard professor, Steven Pinker. As an experimental psychologist, Steven has written extensively about violence - and for his choice from the gallery's collection he has selected two of Pablo Picasso’s most gruesome depictions of man's inhumanity, Charnel House and Guernica, now housed in Madrid.

Producer: Tom Alban

30 of the world's sharpest minds choose a work from MoMA's collection. How do they see it?

Essays from leading writers on arts, history, philosophy, science, religion and beyond.