10 Artists Who Also Make Movies

Fans of the “Frivolous Prince” will be happy to know that the diversely talented Jean Cocteau is the subject of a new museum, dedicated to his numerous creative pursuits. The Cocteau museum in France showcases 990 artworks from the bohemian and will also feature clips of his film works — particularly the unforgettable and gorgeously dreamy fairy tale, La belle et la bête. Cocteau defied categorization, pursuing theater, literature, cinema, and more — which is why we thought it would be appropriate to look at several other artists that wear multiple hats. We’ve chosen a variety of artist-directors, who like Cocteau had large-scale vision. Some of these filmmakers have yet to set their cinematic eye beyond a debut feature, a few have been able to successfully balance a career in both endeavors, and some are better know on the big screen. See who we chose below, and fill us in on your favorites.


Even if you’re not entirely familiar with street artist Banksy, you’ve undoubtedly seen his work pop up online and most assuredly heard of him after 2010 documentary, Exit Through the Gift Shop. Banksy directed the film, which in part tells the story of the early days of street art, but also shows how Thierry Guetta — also known as Mr. Brainwash — became an overnight creative sensation. The film raises a number of interesting questions about the nature of art in general, but perhaps the bigger subject is the validity of the doc — a point of debate amongst critics, the art community, and casual fans. As an artist with a penchant for satire — the nature of his work entirely subversive — many assumed the movie was a meticulous performance by Banksy, despite claims by the director that it was the real deal. We may never truly know if the film was a huge prank, but even if it is a social statement by the artist it seems entirely fitting of his canon.