Chuck Close + David Blaine

Season 5, Episode 6

In ICONOCLASTS: Blaine + Close, the award winning visual artist Chuck Close and the legendary illusionist and endurance artist David Blaine show how they manipulate reality and ignore accepted limits to create awe-inspiring work. While on the surface it might seem that the work of these two friends is completely divergent, Close and Blaine are both driven by a desire to challenge notions of reality and defy expectations. The pair demonstrates their various tricks and reveals the meticulous technique and unwavering dedication to hard work behind their art. The episode features the artists visiting various studios and museums in New York City and even includes a trip to Houdini's grave. 

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An Illusion

David Blaine demonstrates a spooky illusion with playing cards.

Young Artists

Chuck Close and David Blaine visit Studio in a School, a non-profit that provides New York City youth with free arts education.

What is an Iconoclast?

Chuck Close explains what it means to be an Iconoclast.

What is an Iconoclast?

David Blaine explains what it means to be an Iconoclast.

Director's Commentary

Director Joe Berlinger talks about capturing the magic between magician David Blaine and artist and photographer Chuck Close.

Chuck Close


Chuck Close is a visual artist noted for his highly inventive techniques used to paint the human face, and is best known for his large-scale, photo-based portrait paintings. He is also an accomplished printmaker and photographer whose work has been the subject of more than 200 solo exhibitions in more than 20 countries, including major retrospective exhibitions at New York’s Museum of Modern Art, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia in Madrid and most recently at the State Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg, Russia. READ MORE 

David Blaine


David Blaine has redefined magic. The most popular magician of his era, David Blaine is famous for his death defying stunts around the world. He invented “Street Magic” which today is the most well known form of magic. He continues to amaze his viewers, and everyone he encounters with his intimate form of close up magic that each and every person can experience. READ MORE 


Black Orchid

A distinctive and elegant mixture of GREY GOOSE L’Orange, fresh lemon, crème de violette, simple syrup and peach bitters.

See the Recipe 

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