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Actually, Iconic: Richard Estes

Richard Estes has been called the “father of photorealism” but has humbly avoided media attention over his long career. ACTUALLY, ICONIC: Richard Estes invites viewers into Estes’ world with unprecedented access to the artist and his masterpieces. Through conversations about his technique and inspirations, and interviews with leading curators and critics this intimate portrait does more than just explore Estes’ pioneering genius; it humanizes it.

National Review
"I recommend the one-hour film for many reasons — it’s good art history, jargon-free, both jazzy and smooth — but most of all because it demystifies the making of art and the class of humans we call artists.

"Actually, Iconic lets the artist speak. It’s refreshing and conversational.

"It’s a film for scholars, too. ... It’s art history’s first take on a movement. Estes, Philip Pearlstein, William Bailey, Robert Bechtle, and Close and Flack are well known today, Jack Beal and Arthur Leslie less so, but I didn’t know Richard Joseph and Maxwell Hendler. Sidney Tillim was an iconoclast painter, but I know him mostly for art criticism. Personally, and I’m not school-manic, I see Estes and Pearlstein as part of a heritage that also embraces Fairfield Porter, John Koch, Rackstraw Downes, and even artists such as Yvonne Jacquette and Lois Dodds. They start with subjects we know and surprise us from there."

Educational Media Reviews Online | Alessandra Otero, Arts and Humanities Librarian, SUNY Geneseo
Highly Recommended “Floating Stone Productions did a great job presenting the creative process of Richard Estes. This makes this film a great addition to Art and History collections.”


Main credits

Estes, Richard (on-screen participant)
Stone, Olympia (film director)
Stone, Olympia (film producer)
Stone, Olympia (editor of moving image work)
Becker, Jody (editor of moving image work)
Becker, Jody (screenwriter)

Other credits

Director of photography, Adam Shanker; original music, Fred Story.

Docuseek subjects

Distributor subjects

Art History
New York Studies
Art History
Documentary Films


Art, Art History, Richard Estes, Photography, Painting, Photorealism, New York Studies, Biography, LGBTQ+; "Actually, Iconic: Richard Estes"; GOOD DOCS

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