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Art of Spain: The Dark Heart

   2008    Art
Graham-Dixon journeys to the country’s scorched centre to explore Spanish art of the 16th and 17th centuries. From the mystical world of El Greco to the tender genius of Velazquez, this was a moment so extraordinary it became known as the Golden Age. But beneath the glittering surface was a dark and savage heart. Travelling from the architectural jewel of Toledo to majestic Madrid, Andrew Graham-Dixon traces the rise and fall of the Spanish Empire, the brutal conquest of the New World, and the religious madness of the Inquisition, to discover how a history so violent could produce some of the most beautiful art ever seen.
Series: Art of Spain

Van Gogh

   2006    Art
Born in Groot-Zundert, The Netherlands, Van Gogh spent his early life as an art dealer, teacher and preacher in England, Holland and Belgium. His period as an artist began in 1881 when he chose to study art in Brussels, starting with watercolours and moving quickly on to oils. The French countryside was a major influence on his life and his early work was dominated by sombre, earthy colours depicting peasant workers, the most famous of which is The Potato Eaters, 1885. It was during Van Gogh's studies in Paris (1886-8) that he developed the individual style of brushwork and use of colour that made his name. In 1888 he moved to Arles where the Provençal landscape provided his best-known subject matter. However, it also marked the start of his mental crisis following an argument with his contemporary Paul Gauguin. Van Gogh was committed to a mental asylum in 1889 where he continued to paint, but he committed suicide in 1890.
Series: Power of Art

Self-Portrait with Bandaged Ear

   2020    Art
Waldemar Januszczak sets out to uncover the secret meanings hidden in four famous paintings by Van Gogh, Gauguin, Cezanne and Seurat. Everyone knows the pictures. They are among the most celebrated masterpieces of art. And yet, hidden inside them are codes and puzzles that no one has been able to decipher.
Van Gogh’s Self-Portrait with Bandaged Ear was painted soon after he cut off his ear with a razor. But how much do we really know about it? In a far-ranging investigation, Waldemar Januszczak delves into the clues hidden in the painting. The result is a tale of geishas, brothels, bullfights, love affairs, suffering and a fiery relationship with Gauguin. The work has a powerful secret message, if you know what to look for.
Series: The Art Mysteries

The Glory of Byzantium

   2007    Art
Andrew Graham-Dixon travels to Istanbul to immerse himself in the tumultuous world of the Byzantine Empire. He decodes the iconography of the art of the period and explains its continuing relevance.
Series: Art of Eternity

The Mighty Misfits Who Made Marvel

   2017    Art
The series Secret History of Comics takes a deeper look into the stories, people and events that have transformed the world of comic books.
In the first episode, we will explore how Jack Kirby and Stan Lee invented Marvel's most beloved characters. Stan Lee and Jack Kirby are the Lennon and McCartney of Marvel Comics, and just like The Beatles, eons from now, people will still be talking about these characters and the people who created them, akin on the same level.
Series: Secret History of Comics
The Story of Science
The Story of Science

   2010    History
Everything and Nothing
Everything and Nothing

   2011    Science
Leaving Neverland
Leaving Neverland

   2019    Culture
The Nazis, A Warning From History
The Nazis, A Warning From History

   1997    History
Life Story
Life Story

   2014    Nature
Engineering the Future
Engineering the Future

   2020    Technology
Planet Earth
Planet Earth

   2007    Nature
Hiroshima
Hiroshima

   2005    History