Skip to content. | Skip to navigation

Personal tools

Commentaries on this Media!

Columbo and Modern Art

by Critical Commons Manager

This clip from Columbo is exemplary of the argument presented in Lynn Spigel's book TV by Design: Modern Art and the Rise of Network Television (2009), which explores the historical interconnections of television and modern art in American culture. Columbo's naive and inappropriate response to modern art in a snooty gallery, while seemingly a critique of the detective's low-culture status, cleverly situates TV viewers in a position of superiority, aligned with the knowing interests of the "high" culture gallery docent.

Class critique of modern art in Columbo

In this protracted but narratively inconsequential scene from Columbo, the detective models a low culture response to modern art

from Columbo S4E6 "A Deadly State of Mind" (1975)
Creator: William Link and Richard Levinson
Distributor: Universal
Posted by Critical Commons Manager