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John M. Kelly Library

Documentaries: Art and Architecture

This page lists documentaries about architecture, painting, sculpture, and the decorative arts.

The Agony and the Ecstasy

PS3537 .T669 A72 2005 DVD
139 minutes
A feature-length movie dramatization of Irving Stone's novel about the struggle between Pope Julius II and the artist Michelangelo over the painting of the Sistine Chapel. Starring Charlton Heston and Rex Harrison.

The Alma Drawings

N72 .M85 A463 2005 DVD
48 minutes
At the age of fifty, Alma Rumball had a vision in which Christ told her to bring a message to the world. Soon after, she began to produce hundreds of mystical, mythical drawings, full of astonishingly vivid detail.

America's Houses of Worship

D80 .D57 2009 DVD
36 (30 minute) lectures
Course description.

Ancient R.phpan Icons

N8189 .R8 A5 2002 VHS
25 minutes; released 1997.
A documentary about the role of icons in traditional R.phpan Orthodox life based on the collections of the Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow.

Andrei Rublev

ND699 .R8 A65 1998 DVD
205 minutes; released 1969.
A 15th-century monk perseveres in painting icons despite the civil disruptions and cruel turmoil of his times. In R.phpan with English subtitles. Directed by Andrei Tarkovsky.

The Andrei Rublev Icon Museum

N8189 .R82 M6 2008 DVD
18 minutes; released 1991
A documentary about the Savior-Andronikov Monastery in Moscow and its collection of icons.

The Architecture of Doom = Architektur des Untergangs

N6868.5 .N37 A73 1991 DVD
119 minutes
Looks at the rise of the Nazi Party in Germany from the perspective of Hitler's use of the arts in Nazi policy and propaganda. Audio-track in German with optional English subtitles.

Art Across the Ages

N5300 .S658 2007 DVD
48 (30 minute) lectures
A Teaching Company course. Course description

The Art of the Northern Renaissance

N6370 .S23 2007 DVD
36 (30 minute) lectures
A Teaching Company course. Course description.

The Book of Kells: The Work of Angels?

ND3359 .K4 B66 2006 DVD
60 minutes
"The Book of Kells" tells the story of this magnificent masterpiece. Created on the windy Hebridean island of Iona thirteen centuries ago, it now rests in the Trinity College library in Dublin. The manuscript has mystified, and motivated writers from W.B. Yeats to James Joyce and Umberto Eco, and its intricate Celtic knotwork continues to influence artists and craftsmen today.

Books and Kings

N5300 .D58 v.6 VHS
45 minutes
Sixty of the most precious books formerly owned by the Kings of France and now owned by the Bibliothèque Nationale in Paris.


N5300 .D58 v.2 1999 VHS
45 minutes
A documentary about the life and work of the early Renaissance Italian painter. Examines three of his masterpieces: Primavera, Pallas and the Centaur, and the Birth of Venus.

Camille Claudel

NB 553 .C44 P32 2001 DVD
159 minutes; released 1989.
Feature length movie dramatizing the true story of the legendary sculptor Rodin and his prodigy Camille Claudel. Stars Gerard Depardieu and Isabelle Adjani.

Carl Th. Dreyer: My Metier

PN1998.3 .D74 C35 2001 DVD
94 minutes; released 1995.
Using interviews, historical writings, and rare archival footage, this documentary sketches a portrait of one of cinema's greatest directors and provides and in-depth study of his life and work. Narrated in English; interviews in Danish and French with optional English subtitles. Directed by Torben Skjdt Jensen.



DA660 .C37 2006 DVD
60 minutes
An introduction to the British castle and its place in medieval life and warfare. Hosted by David Macaulay

Castles of Scotland

DA 875 .C37 2005 DVD
150 minutes
A documentary exploring the romantic history of the clans of Scotland through tours of the turrets, battlements and grandly furnished great halls of structures that have witnessed centuries of war, tribal treachery and occasional splendor. Also includes Scotland: The Edge of the Land, an aerial journey along Scotland's western coastline.



NA4830 .C38 2006 DVD
60 minutes
The construction of a fictional but representative Gothic cathedral, showing how the building was shaped by cultural and religious forces. Hosted by David Macaulay

Cezanne in Provence

ND 553 .C33C49 2006 DVD
57 minutes
This program explores the link between the famous artist, Paul Cézanne, and his beloved home in Aix-en-Provence, France. Some of Cezanne's paintings are also shown.

Civilisation: A Personal View by Lord Clark

CB203 .C48 2006 DVD
11 (60 minute) episodes; released 1969.
Art historian Kenneth Clark examines the breadth of Western European culture, defining what he considers to be the crucial phases of its development.

Degenerate Art

N6868 .D33 1995 VHS
60 minutes
Describes Nazi attacks on the avant garde and the destruction of modernist art culminating in the 1937 exhibition of "Entartete Kunst" (degenerate art) in Munich.

The Divine Comedy: Visions of Violence and Beauty

PQ4391 .B688 D58 2004 DVD
60 minutes
A documentary about the 92 illustrations produced by Sandro Botticelli to accompany an edition of Dante Alighieri's The Divine Comedy.

F for Fake

PN1997 .F467 2005 DVD
88 minutes; released 1972.
In this free-form documentary, the legendary filmmaker Orson Welles engages the central preoccupation of his career: the tenuous line between truth and illusion, art and lies.

Florence: The Power of the Past

DG737.26 .P694 2008 DVD
90 minutes
Journalist Bill Moyers travels to Florence to explore how the city's rich Reniassance legacy affects the way people think and feel today. Features the frescoes of Massaccio and Masolino, the sculpture of Donatello, Ghiberti and Michaelangelo, and the architecture of Brunelleschi.

From Monet to Van Gogh: A History of Impr.phponism

ND192 .I4 B73 2002 DVD
24 (30 minute) lectures
A Teaching Company course. Course description.

Teaching Company

The Genius of Michelangelo

N6923 .B9 G465 2007 DVD
36 (30 minute) lectures
A Teaching Company course. Course description.

Gothic Cathedrals

NA4830 .G68 1995 DVD
50 minutes
A documentary about the architecture of Gothic cathedrals including Notre Dame in Paris, Notre Dame in Chartres, and the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C.

Teaching Company

a href="" target="_blank">Great Artists of the Italian Renaissance

N6915 .K56 2004 DVD
36 (30 minute) lectures
A Teaching Company course. Course description.

Hermitage Masterpieces

N 3350 .H465 2004 DVD
8 hours, 18 minutes
An 18 part series covering world history through the medium of the art on display at the Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg, R.phpa.

Holy Image, Holy Space

Holy Image, Holy Space: Icons and Frescoes from Greece

N8189 .G72 H6 1989 DVD
2 programs, approximately 30 minutes each
Filmed at the Walters Art Gallery in Baltimore, Maryland, this documentary focuses on icons as objects of religious worship and artistic achievement.

Homage to Chagall: The Colours of Love

N6999 .C46 H66 2002 DVD
88 minutes
A documentary portrait of the R.phpan painter Marc Chagall, with photographs of over 300 of his paintings, murals and stained-glass windows. Also includes interviews with the artist and his wife.

How Art Made the World

N5300 .H69 2006 DVD
290 minutes; 5 episodes
A series about how the first big artistic discoveries were made and how they have cascaded down the centuries to define the look of the present day.

Iconography, Sts. Volodymyr & Olha Church

N6995 .U5 I32 1990 VHS
30 minutes
A documentary about the decoration of a Byzantine church in Chicago. In Ukrainian and English.

Images of Jesus

N8050 .I43447 2005 DVD
52 minutes
Traces the various ways in which Jesus has been portrayed in art from the fourth century to the present day. Documents wooden icons from the Eastern church, stained glass windows of the great cathedrals, fresco paintings, woodcuts on paper, and silk paintings from the east, by famous and unknown artists.

Lindisfarne Gospels

ND3359 .L5 L5 1999z DVD
26 minutes
A documentary about this seventh century illuminated manuscript. Part of the Memorable Leaders in Christianity series.

Lust for Life

PS3537 .T669 L87 2006 DVD
122 minutes; released 1956.
A dramatization of the life of artist Vincent Van Gogh based on the novel by Irving Stone. Starring Kirk Douglas.

Marie Helene Allain: Speaking with Stone

NB249 .A43 M375 2008 DVD
52 minutes
Nun and prof.phponal sculptor Marie Helene Allain describes how she has united her spirituality with her art.

Teaching Company

Masterworks of American Art

N6505 .K58 2008 DVD
24 (30 minute) lectures
Course description.

The Medici

DG737.42 .M43 2003 DVD
220 minutes
A documentary about the Florentine family who helped ignite the Renaissance in Italy.

A Model for Matisse

ND553 .M37 M634 2003 DVD
67 minutes
A documentary about the relationship between Henri Matisse and Sister Jacques-Marie, the woman who inspired him to create the Chapel of the Rosary in the village of Vence.

Teaching Company

Museum Masterpieces: The Louvre

N2030 .B748 2006 DVD
12 (30 minute) lectures
Course description.

Teaching Company

Museum Masterpieces: The Metropolitan Museum of Art

N610 .B748 2008 DVD
24 (30 minute) lectures
Course description.

Teaching Company

Museum Masterpieces: The National Gallery, London

N1070 .M87 2009 DVD
24 (30 minute) lectures
Course description.

My Kid Could Paint That

N352 .M9 2008 DVD
83 minutes
The controversy about a four-year old artist compared to Jackson Pollock - who may have had .phpstance from her parents.


N8060 .N38 2005 DVD
30 minutes
A documentary about the history, art and spirituality of nativity scenes.

Pablo Picasso's Guernica

N5300 .D58 v.1 1999 VHS
45 minutes
A documentary about Picasso's 1937 painting "Guernica," which memorializes the German air bombardment of the Spanish town of Guernica during the Spanish Civil War.

Paint the Rain

Paint the Rain

RC439 .P356 1974 DVD
10 minutes
A brief dramatization about a young mental patient who is moved by a painting.

Painted Nation

GT2344 .I4 P356 2005 DVD
48 minutes
Filmmaker Cyrus Sundar Singh looks at the vanishing art form of hand-painted Indian posters and their spiritual significance.

Paintings in Books

N5300 .D58 v.4 VHS
45 minutes
A major exhibition featuring 240 manuscripts of French illumination from 1430 to 1520.

Picturing Mary

Picturing Mary

N8070 .P53 2007 DVD
57 minutes
An examination of paintings, mosaics, and sculpture of the Virgin Mary. Narrated by Jane Seymour.

Playing Elizabeth's Tune: The Tallis Scholars Sing William Byrd

ML410 .B996 P53 2004 DVD
194 minutes
William Byrd was a devout Catholic and the favourite composer of Queen Elizabeth I. This documentary features performances of his sacred music and a biographical sketch.


DT63 .P9 2006 DVD
60 minutes
An introduction to the Egyptian pyramid showing how it was constructed and used. Hosted by David Macaulay.

The Rape of Europa

N8795.3 .E85 N532 2008 DVD
117 minutes
A provocative account of the Nazi theft of cultural masterpieces during World War II, and of their subsequent recovery and repatriation.

Reflections of Glory: The Origins of Byzantine Art

N6250 .R43 1989 VHS
20 minutes
The spiritual and cultural dynamics of early Christianity that gave rise to the art of the Byzantine icon.

Roman City

TA80 .R6 R65 2006 DVD
60 minutes
The construction of a fictional but representative Roman city in Gaul, showing how the city acted as both a commercial and political unit. Hosted by David Macaulay.

Sacred Craft

N8189 .B9 S237 2007z DVD
Approx. 75 minutes
Fr. Brendan McAnerney introduces Western Christians to the art, spirituality, history and tradition of "holy iconography" as practiced in the churches of the East.

The Saints with Sister Wendy

ND1430 .S23 1997 VHS
60 minutes
British art critic, Sister Wendy Beckett, explores Italian illuminated manuscripts.

The Seven Churches of Revelation Rediscovered

BS 2825.2 .S484 1999 DVD
40 minutes
Host David Nunn takes viewers to Turkey on a tour of the seven cities mentioned in Revelation chapters 2-3.

Simon Schama's Power of Art

N5300 .S32 2007 DVD
8 (50 minute) episodes
Simon Schama introduces eight major artists: Caravaggio, Bernini, Rembrandt, David, Turner, Van Gogh, Picasso, and Rothko.

a href="" target="_blank">Sister Wendy's Pains of Glass

NK5344 .C26 P34 1998 VHS
58 minutes
Sister Wendy Beckett and Dr. George Pattison conduct a tour of the King's College Chapel, Cambridge, and provide explanations of the significance of the stained glass windows in the chapel.

Something Dancing About Her

ND249 .M27 P44 2005 DVD
69 minutes
Examines the legacy of Pegi Nicol MacLeod, a relatively unknown Canadian painter.

Spirit of the Art

N7824.2 .C2 D66 2005 DVD
6 23-minute episodes
A guide to the Donovan Collection of contemporary Canadian art with spiritual themes owned by St Michael’s.

<Superstar: The Life and Times of Andy Warhol

N6537 .W28S8 2000 VHS
87 minutes; released 1990.
This stylish and definitive documentary about painter Andy Warhol traces his life from Pittsburgh schoolboy to pop art legend, from advertising illustrator to chronicler of the haut monde of New York City.

To Write an Icon

N8188 .T6 2010 DVD
6 60-minute episodes
A step-by-step instructional tool on the process of creating traditional Byzantine icons.

Treasures of Sacred Art: Tuscan Journeys

N6919 .T67 T743 2002 DVD
30 programs, each 30 approximately minutes
A series about the rich artistic history of Tuscany, including works by Cimabue, Giotto, Duccio, Brunelleschi, Masaccio, Donatello, Fra Angelico, and Michelangelo.

Vatican Museums

N2940 .V385 2006 DVD
410 minutes. Released 1997.
An overview of the Vatican Museums and of five hundred years of papal art collecting.

Vermeer: The Magical Light

N5300 .D58 v.3 1999 VHS
45 minutes
A documentary about the life and work of the 17th-century Dutch painter, Johannes Vermeer.

We Own the World

JK468 .P64 C466 2007 DVD
105 minutes; released 2007.
A documentary of a 2007 lecture by Noam Chomsky on US government and corporate elite policies.

Who the #$&% is Jackson Pollock?

ND237 .P73 W46 2007 DVD
74 minutes; released 2006.
A retired truck driver and her team of lawyers and forensic experts try to convince the art world that a painting she bought for $5 is in fact a Jackson Pollock original.