28 Nov 2012

The Shock of the New (1980)

To pay tribute to the art critic Robert Hughes (1938–2012), the BBC recently broadcast The Shock of the New — the outstanding 1980 documentary TV series in which Hughes reappraises modern art, architecture and design within a social and historical context.

At best, Hughes’ droll and rather pugnacious manner of speaking is entertaining; the imaginatively themed episodes, however, are stimulating and educational.

All eight episodes are available to watch on YouTube (via OpenCulture): The Mechanical Paradise, The Powers That Be, The Landscape of Pleasure, Trouble in Utopia, The Threshold of Liberty, The View From the Edge, Culture as Nature and The Future That Was.