Segments in this Video

Art Auction (01:38)


Christie's of New York auctions Mark Rothko's "Orange, Red, Yellow" for $86.9 million. Kate Rothko believes her father would have been appalled; he cared about "the sensitive viewer."

National Gallery of Art (03:09)

Experts reflect on the deceptive simplicity of Rothko's work; every piece is open to viewer interpretation.

Rothko's Youth (05:18)

Alfred Molina reflects on playing Rothko in "Red." Rothko, born in Dvinsk, emigrates to the U.S. in 1913. He sells newspapers and works at his uncle's store. Rothko graduates high school and attends Yale for two years before going to New York.

New York Art Scene: 1920s (03:09)

The community is small and artists join the Art Students League to study modern art. Rothko decides to become a visual artists and befriends Milton Avery; see several figurative paintings.

Family and Art (02:49)

In 1933, Rothko and his wife Edith visit Oregon; Rothko paints watercolor landscapes. Despite family members not understanding his career choice, they remain close.

Early Art Career (02:34)

Rothko works during the day and paints at night. Kate believes he likely struggled with depression; a series about the New York subway indicates his mindset.

Modern Art Conservation (03:34)

Jay Krueger retouches impact cracks on a Rothko painting at the National Gallery of Art. Experts discuss Rothko's painting technique.

American Art (03:48)

In 1940, Rothko changes his name from Markus Rothkowitz. He and Adolph Gottlieb begin a series influenced by Greek mythology. The artists participate in a 1943 art exhibition; they write a letter to the "New York Times" highlighting five points.

Abstract Expressionism (03:07)

The artistic movement emerges in the 1940s and the center of the art world shifts from Paris to New York. Rothko moves into "Multiforms."

Painting Technique (02:11)

Makoto Fujimura works on a painting and discusses Nihonga. He believes Rothko thought in layers and his art is an invitation to hope.

Father and Artist (03:30)

Kate looks at family photographs. She and her brother Christopher reflect on Rothko as a father. In 1949, Rothko develops the style for which he is best known.

Seagram Commission (05:39)

In the 1950s, Rothko begins selling his work and becomes a household name. Philip Johnson commissions a series of murals for The Four Seasons. After visiting the restaurant, Rothko refuses the commission and places the murals in storage.

Rothko Chapel (05:24)

In 1964, the de Menil family commissions Rothko to create a chapel. Kate recalls her father agonizing over the paintings; Christopher remembers spending time in his father's studio.

Traumatic Events (03:24)

In 1968, Rothko suffers an aortic aneurysm. Despite physical limitations, he experiences a prolific period of art production. In February 1970, Rothko commits suicide.

Tate Modern (02:46)

In 1969, Rothko donates nine of the Seagram Murals to the museum; they arrive the day he dies. Millions of people visit the Rothko room every year.

Credits: Rothko: Pictures Must Be Miraculous (01:04)

Credits: Rothko: Pictures Must Be Miraculous

For additional digital leasing and purchase options contact a media consultant at 800-257-5126
(press option 3) or

Rothko: Pictures Must Be Miraculous

3-Year Streaming Price: $169.95



Celebrated painter Mark Rothko is considered one of the most renowned figures of the Abstract Expressionist movement. He transformed the world of art beginning in the 1940s. Rothko: Pictures Must Be Miraculous explores the artist’s tumultuous journey and includes interviews with Rothko’s daughter Kate and son Christopher, Academy Award-nominated writer John Logan, and scenes from the Tony Award-winning play "Red," with Alfred Molina in the role of Mark Rothko.

Length: 54 minutes

Item#: FPT206158

Copyright date: ©2019

Closed Captioned

Performance Rights

Prices include public performance rights.

Not available to Home Video, Dealer and Publisher customers.