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There are many books and museum exhibitions that will tell you about an artist’s work and attempt to describe the artist at work. Also, there are many video clips with a recognized expert doing the same. However, few if any, show the artist her/himself actually at work. Thanks to our friends at Open Culture, OPEN CULTURE we have been made aware of three such videos showing Monet, Matisse, and Picasso actually at work. In fact, how an artist works can be an entire study in itself, without which, an exhibition of an artist’s work would be incomplete.

Creative use of the New Media in Fine Art doesn’t have to be flashy. As Open Culture and these clips show, presentation of historical material, such as clips of artists actually at work along with knowledgeable commentary, via the internet, is a creative use of the New Media to make this material available to the widest audience possible.


Claude Monet at Work in His Famous Garden at Giverny, 1915. The New York Botanical Garden Exhibition, “Monet’s Garden”,Monet’s Gardencurated by Professor Paul Hayes Tucker of the University of Massachusetts Boston, the world’s leading Claude Monet scholar and an expert on Impressionism, re-creates Monet’s Garden at Giverny. As the website states,

“Claude Monet created some of the world’s most beloved artworks. But did you know one of the things Monet considered among his greatest masterpieces was not a painting? It was Giverny, the artist’s idyllic home in the French countryside, about 50 miles from Paris. Monet was an avid gardener who once reflected that perhaps flowers were the reason he became a painter.”

“At Giverny, Monet carefully tended and transformed what was once a provincial kitchen garden into a floral fantasia, and constructed the pond where he grew the water lilies that graced many of his most famous paintings.”

It may, however, come as a surprise that actual footage exists of Monet painting at Giverny.


Picasso is alleges to have said that “in the end, there is only Matisse.”


What more can be said about Picasso? One thing is that watching him work allows us to see the artist separate from the (often “larger than life”) man.


Museums are beginning to include footage of the artist at work, one example of which was the recent exhibition at the Peabody Essex Museum Peabody Essex Museum of the work of surrealist photographer Jerry Uelsmann

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