A History of Art in Three Colours

Series 1 - 3. White

Radio Times
Review by:
David Crawford

The history of white is a fascinating and controversial tale. In his concluding documentary James Fox’s core question is how the notion that all of antiquity was clad in white came to prominence.

The blame appears to lie with a flamboyant German Johann Joachim Winckelmann, who in the 18th century promoted ideas about the virtues of white in classical art. Fox also pulls in Duchamp, Whistler, Le Courbusier and Mussolini to show how those virtues were corrupted into something darker.

About this programme

3/3. Art historian James Fox concludes his examination of gold, blue and white by arguing that the latter has moved from being a symbol of virtue and purity to one revealing the darkest human instincts. He explores why the colour fascinated 18th-century potter Josiah Wedgwood and art historian Johann Joachim Winckelmann, and examines how in the 20th century it came to be linked with the Italian dictator Mussolini and fascism. Last in the series.

Cast and crew

Cast

Presenter
James Fox

Crew

Director
Matt Hill
Executive Producer
Jonty Claypole
Producer
Matt Hill
Categories
Arts

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