-Fred, there are
so many reasons that I am thankful
to call you a friend. One is that
you’re a man of many talents — so many that I feel like people can’t even list everything
that you’re good at. But one thing I did not know, that you filled me in on
this week, is that you
are an art connoisseur. -Oh, yeah.
I know all art. -Yeah.
[ Laughter ] And I feel like when you say
things like, “I know all art,” people assume,
“Oh, I know a lot about art,” but you’re actually saying you have an
art historian’s knowledge not just of one type of art
or one era of art. You know everything
about every single painting that has ever been painted. -Every single painting,
since the very first one. [ Laughter ] -What was the first one? -It was the beginnings —
it was unfinished — of one of the cave drawings.
-Uh-huh. -And he just started drawing,
like, the sort of the top of the head
and the back of the neck. And it was really good work.
It was really — It’s hard to find.
-Yeah. It’s hard to find? -Yeah.
-Yeah, I would imagine. ‘Cause it’s in a cave.
-Yeah. [ Laughter ] -But, Fred, I do want to stress,
if this is something you just — ‘Cause sometimes you get
a little nervous with people, and then you overstate things. If this isn’t true,
we don’t have to do this. -No, I want to do this.
-Okay. [ Laughter ] -‘Cause I would feel bad
if I put you on the spot and made you explain a painting
if this is not a true thing. -No, I enjoy this.
-Okay. -It’s time once again
for our segment, “Fred Armisen, Art Aficionado.” [ Cheers and applause ] -You guys.
All right, here we go, Freddie. You ready?
Here we go. You hold it like this. Fred, this is Norman Rockwell’s 1943 painting
“Freedom From Want.” Fred, what can you tell us — Using your
art historian’s knowledge, what can you tell us
about this painting? -It’s a very funny story. I know the story
behind this painting. He was working on
something else. [ Laughter ]
And, um… And his boss
at the art company was like, “We want a painting
of salt and pepper shakers.” Right? So they’re like,
“Can you do that?” He’s like, “What? Here.” So he started painting it,
and — So he started
doing those right there? -Yeah.
-Okay. -He’s like,
“There’s your painting. Thank you very much.
Send me the check, whenever.” And —
-How long did Norman Rockwell work at the art company? -His career.
His whole career. -Oh, his whole career,
he was at the same art company? They’re like,
“We hire you for paintings.” -Okay. Gotcha.
Sorry, I cut you off. So, he finishes
the salt and pepper? -And he sends it to them.
“Hey, thanks a lot. I’m gonna work on
my other paintings.” And they sent it back. They’re like,
“Can you add the face of a lady looking at the
salt and pepper shaker?” And he’s like,
“All right. Great.” So they kept doing this
back and forth, so this is one of
the first paintings where he did it,
actually, angrily, where he’s like,
“Oh, my God, here, here. Here.” “Can you put a turkey
on a plate?” He’s like, “Oh, my —
Here, here! Here you go! There. Are we done?
Are we finished with this?” And he kept sending it back. And they were like,
“We know you’re mad. We are so sorry.
This is just, like, what we want.”
-Yeah. -“So, can you put some
white curtains behind them, and then,
we promise we’re done.” He was like, very quickly,
with a house paintbrush, behind them —
-Oh, wow! Like very passive-aggressively,
it sounds like, yeah? -Oh, yeah, yeah.
Yes, he had his ways. -And so he sent it to them. But the guy was posing
for the front of the painting… -Uh-huh.
That guy. [ Laughter ] -An actual guy posed for that.
-Yeah. Like, decided during the thing
to, like, turn back at him, and he’s like, “I don’t care. I’m just doing it
the way I see it.” -Oh! So this was supposed to be
the back of the head… -Yes!
-…and the guy turned around to look at Norman Rockwell,
and he, like, angrily was like, “Fine.
I’ll paint it like that”? -Yeah. He’s like,
“This is what they want? Great. I guess
he’s looking at the camera.” -So, this right here,
this famous thing, this is a mistake, basically.
-A mistake, yes. -Wow.
-Yeah. -What an education.
-Yeah. -Thank you so much, Fred.
-Oh, you’re very welcome. -Happy Thanksgiving.
-Happy Thanksgiving. -Give it up
for Fred Armisen, everybody.