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Who Gets to Call It Art [DVD] [2006] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]

5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product details

  • Format: NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (US and Canada DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: Unrated (US MPAA rating. See details.)
  • Studio: Uni Dist Corp (Music)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • ASIN: B000EQ5V9A
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 220,185 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

A look at the life of Henry Geldzahler and the New York art scene of the 1960s.

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD Verified Purchase
A vivid and witty journey through the New York Art scene of the 1960s set around the colourful and inspiring no nonsense figure of Henry Geldzahler whose love of ART & it's creators is infectous. Henry was the first curator of modern art at the Met whose love and appreciation of art was indeed his life.

The film captures the spirit & the time in New York in a way that makes you want to be there.

Finding Henry in this film is especially significant for me both as a practising artist in a concentrated area of London that is experiencing a similar flowering of the Arts. Hackney Wick is in the shadow of the 2012 Olympic site and artists migrated this far east to occupy the old industrial warehouses in search of cheap studio rent. The area is now in a state of flux , but now constitutes the largest concentration of artists anywhere in Europe. So I discovered an afinity I never expected.

Best quote of the film is Geldzhler in fearless curator mode saying in response to a secretary at the Met asking why he got so many phonecalls compared to the other curators & his response to modern art " well all my Artists are still alive".

The directors and producers must be congratulated for approaching the subject of contemporary art with a sense of fun & enjoyment.

But there was another more haunting & personal connection when I saw the film, because as it turns out, Henry Geldzahler was a relative of my late fathers from Antwerp !
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0x8a933ee8) out of 5 stars 12 reviews
23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8a93efcc) out of 5 stars The life and legend of Henry Geldzahler and the Pop Art movement 1 April 2007
By Craig Matteson - Published on
Format: DVD
Henry Geldzahler came from a well-to-do family and always wanted to be a curator. After interning at the Whitney at 15 he fell in love with modern art. He got a degree from Yale and after a couple of years of doctoral studies at Harvard he accepted a position at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, which was hardly known for its support of the latest directions in art.

This movie is about Geldzahler and what he did to support the pop art movement that included artists such as Andy Warhol, Jasper Johns, Roy Lichtenstein, Frank Stella, and many others. The story is told with tapes and films of Geldzahler, as well as period and contemporary interviews with the artists concerned (whether supportive or contrary to the movement).

The culmination of the film is the famous and hugely controversial show Geldzahler put on in 1970 at the Metropolitan. "New York Painting 1940-1970". It was a blockbuster and still resonates to this day. I loved the comment about how he selected what to put in the show (because no matter how large an exhibition, so much had to be left out). Geldzahler said that he picked those works that he had seen and than left him wanting to see it again. Whatever you think about the "seriousness" or "worth" of the art, much of it is certainly beautiful and all of it is full of cheer, optimism, fun, and some downright silliness. Isn't that refreshing from being dour all the time?

Henry Geldzahler died far too young at 59 in 1994. We even get to see inside his home and the beautiful objects with which he had surrounded himself. They are stunning.

This is a fine short film to get some background about this interesting and influential patron on modern art and the artists who did all that work. It is quite charmingly done and never gets sidetracked in the side arguments.

26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8a92fd14) out of 5 stars Influence and Art Culture 29 Sept. 2006
By Rebecca of Amazon - Published on
Format: DVD
A fascination with influence may draw you to this documentary of art appreciation. Henry Geldzahler was the first contemporary art curator for the Metropolitan Museum of Art and his "New York Painting and Sculpture 1940-1970" exhibit is said to be the largest exhibit of modern art by living artists at the Met.

Through this journey into the life of Henry Geldzahler we discover the depths of the friendship between Henry and Andy Warhol and how at the height of their friendship they talked on the phone daily. It seemed they supported each other's artistic visions.

Henry Geldzahler loved to be photographed, was a natural in front of a camera and also loved to sit for portraits. David Hockney's painting of Henry sitting on a couch is shown in reality and then as the painting. These types of contrasts show reality vs. the artist's vision and perhaps explain "in a subtle way" how Henry's presence changed the world of art.

Since I had just arrived in the world in the 60s, this is all pretty much new to me and it helps to explain the rise of contemporary art in a positive way. It is likely that you will recognize very few artists featured if you are under 40 and not an art student, but this doesn't detract from the human-interest story.

Artists interviewed include: Andy Warhol, Frank Stella, David Hockney, John Chamberlain, Francesco Clemente, Mark di Suvero, Ellsworth Kelly, Larry Poons and James Rosenquist. This gives a fascinating inside view of what was happening in the art world during the 60s.

After viewing this DVD, you can't help but recognize the influence of the artists featured while visiting today's art museums.

~The Rebecca Review
12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8b156060) out of 5 stars An Important Film 26 Dec. 2006
By Cynthia - Published on
Format: DVD
I teach contemporary art. This film utilizes clips and quotes from other films about highly significant artists working from the late 50s forward. It is time for the general public to see Henry Geldzahler as the catalyst and creative coordinator for this diverse group. . .a must have for understanding the evolution of art since the 1960s.
9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8aa7900c) out of 5 stars Pop art 10 April 2007
By raz - Published on
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I've purchased this DVD to find out what's behind pop art who are its main protagonists and indeed who gets to call it art? The feature is made up by a series of interviews with prominent artists from the 50s and 60s who weren't so well known back then. In fact is a film about Henry Geldzahler who went to the art school with Andy Warhol and became curator at Met during the 60s, Henry introduced artists like Larry Poons, Mark Di Suvero, Andy Warhol, etc to the general public thus enlarging and challenging the established view of what's art. The movie also answered my question - pop art social effect is simply to reconcile us to a world of commodities...banalities and vulgarities which is to say in effect indistinguishable from advertising art.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8a93ed80) out of 5 stars ...from ArtsyFartsy News, May/June 2008 25 Jan. 2009
By Robert Burridge Studio - Published on
Format: DVD
Have you ever wondered how the Andy Warhols, the Jasper Johns and the David Hockneys got their work in museums while they were alive?

Well, I have! "Who Gets to Call it Art?" is an immensely entertaining collection of how contemporary artists and their work got "the nod" from one man. During this eighty minute documentary, you will hear from the artists themselves and every one points their success to one man... Henry Geldzahler. as curator for the stuffy and dated Metropolitan Museum of Art, Henry was sent out from behind his desk to search out the New York underground, modern artists.

This is one of my favorite historic DVDs because I can listen to and watch some of my most admired risk-takers in the 60s. This was the beginning of how American artists challenged everything and changed art as we know it today. Henry (a real character of a guy) shows us how he did his work and helped make them all famous. Get this DVD!
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