Tim's Vermeer

January 30th, 2014


Tim's Vermeer

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Inventor Tim Jenison seeks to understand the painting techniques used by Dutch Master Johannes Vermeer.

Release Year: 2013

Rating: 8.2/10 (158 voted)

Critic's Score: 77/100

Director: Teller

Stars: Tim Jenison, Penn Jillette, Colin Blakemore

Inventor Tim Jenison seeks to understand the painting techniques used by Dutch Master Johannes Vermeer.

Colin Blakemore - Himself
David Hockney - Himself
Tim Jenison - Himself
Penn Jillette - Himself
Martin Mull - Himself
Philip Steadman - Himself
Teller - Himself


Official Website: Official Facebook | Official Sony Pictures Website

Country: USA

Language: English

Release Date: 3 October 2013

Technical Specs


User Review


Rating: 8/10

The Penn and Teller film (Penn talks, Teller directs) Tim's Vermeer is a rapturous demonstration of one man's magnificent obsession. It's also very, very funny.

The plot has the San Antonio inventor but non-artist Tim Jenison prove that the unprecedented detail of a Vermeer painting could perhaps only be done with a mechanical device. He builds one, makes his own lenses, grinds his own period paints and then laboriously but precisely paints his own Vermeer. QED.

But the theme of the film might be the contemporary dissociation of sensibility. T.S. Eliot coined that term to describe the split between reason and the emotional life that happened between the Metaphysical Poets and the Victorians.

But the phrase could equally apply to the contemporary split between art and technology. Vermeer is no less an artist — indeed arguably an even more impressive intelligence and craftsman — for having devised some mechanical supplement for his painting, perhaps along the lines of Jenison's. And Jenison's technical brilliance and craft should surely not disqualify him from the title "artist." His sharp eye and scrupulously detailed mark-making deserve no lesser title. Perhaps it was that confluence of art and science that attracted the brilliant team of magicians to the project. For more see www.yacowar.blogspot.com.


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