- Ivan Karp was an Instrumental art dealer in the 1960’s who gave Warhol the initial idea to create the Cows series. The original image of the cow was chosen by Gerald Malanga, Warhol’s printer. It was the finished product that made the image so intriguing , nonetheless the subject.
- Was used as Wallpaper for Andy’s museum and gallery exhibits 5 times.
- The FIFTH Cow in the series has been confirmed by Revolver Gallery The catalogue raisonne doesn’t recognize the 5th because it was never confirmed, but Revolver has it.
- St Apollonia is known as the ‘patron saint of dentistry’ because in the process of denying conformity in religion, her teeth were pulled one by one with pincers in an effort to suede her decision.
- St Apollonia became a martyr after asked to renounce her faith in the third century, upon Emperor Philip taking reign. She refused to do so and as a result, was presented with an ultimatum of being burned alive or confirming. She chose to die in the fire
- When Andy Warhol visited the original St Apollonia in Washington D.C, he was so inspired by the story that he created his own adaption, varying very little from the original painting.
Hans Christian Andersen
- Hans Christian Andersen is known as “Father of the Fairytale”, and while most of his stories were gruesome and grim in plot, they touched Andy Warhol’s soul in such a way that inspired him to create a series based on the Fairytales.
- What separates the Hans Christian Andersen series from other noteable images of Warhol’s, is the way he conveyed Hans so respectfully. Hans is portrayed honorably in the pieces, an almost homage that shines through in the ways Warhol was drawn to his stories.
- 395-397 depicts characters from Hans Christian Andersen’s stories The Little Mermaid, Thumbelina and The Ugly Duckling.
- Andy Warhol had an interest in nature that began when he was a child. He had a garden kept in his family’s yard, and frequently drew at local conservatories while in college.
- The Flowers series were highly relevant and popular amongst the 60’s “Flower Power” movement.
- Upon the Flowers series debut, many thought it to be out of character for Warhol to departure from his typical subject matters of Fame, Celebrities and everyday objects. His series previous to this was “13 Most Wanted Men”.
- The Sunset series was originally a commissioned series for Johnson and Burgee, two famed Architects, and to be used at the Hotel Marquette in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
- The screen prints for Sunset were produced and nearly unheard of with 472 color variations using only three silk screens.
- Three locations that inspired the prints for Sunset were East Hampton, San Francisco and New York.
- The Mao series was created after Andy’s long time dealer Bruno Bischofberger suggested he return to making portraits by capturing one of the most important figures of the 20th Century.
- Andy recalled previous to the Mao series, that he had read in Life Magazine Mao was named the most famous person in the world at that time. Being so fond of celebrities, fame and wealth, the Mao series was created.
- The Mao series was the first political portrait Warhol had ever done.
- Andy Warhol ate Campbell’s Soup for lunch every day of his life from the time he was a child until his death in 1987. He was quoted saying, “I used to drink it. I used to have the same lunch, every day for 20 years I guess, the same thing over and over again.”
- The original set of 32 were sold separately. After 5 of the pieces had been bought by different owners, Art dealer Irving Blum bought them back under the impression they would later be more valuable as a complete set. Warhol sold the series to Irving for $1000 with the promise they would later be put on display at the MoMA In New York City. In 1995 he sold the set to the MoMA for $15 million.
- The Ferus Gallery debut (also the first West Coast debut for Warhol) of the Campbell’s Soup Series was disliked by many, including a write up in the L.A. Times citing “This artist is either a soft-headed fool, or a hard-headed charlatan.” Much to the initial flop reaction, the soup cans later went on to be the most Iconic and notable series Warhol has ever done.
- The Myths series depicted fictional characters of Film, History and culture and were images taken mostly from 1950’s television or Hollywood films. It is one of the most sought after of Warhol’s series, due to the universal recognition of the subject matter.
- It is said that each character represents a different facet to Warhol’s personality and desires, including The Shadow; a fictional radio crime fighter who Warhol chose himself to represent the character.
- This series includes 10 prints, and were first shown in an exhibit at the Ronald Feldman Fine Arts Gallery the same year they were created.
- Given Warhol’s interest in photography, collage and drawing – by the 1970’s. he had adapted a “handmade” look that became evident by additions of collage element such as torn graphic kool aid paper, which produced a seemingly endless array of colors. This added to the uniqueness of each individual print.
- This series of prints were characteristic for the change of style Warhol had begun, and were each signed by both Andy Warhol and Mick Jagger.
- Mick Jagger became a regular at The Factory beginning around 1963, when The Rolling Stones were not yet well known in the United States. He and Andy became well known friends, resulting in The Sticky Fingers album being designed by Warhol.
- As Warhol was an admirer of both Celebrities and morbid concepts, the Marilyn Monroe series was created shortly after her suicide in August of 1962.
- Warhol began silk-screens in August of 1962, because he wanted something that gave more of an assembly line affect. However, with his experimental methods for silk screens, he developed a way to do this yet make the images seem slightly different from every other one. This created differing moods to each print, giving it its own identity entirely.
- There were originally 250 prints of this Marilyn series, along with two separate Marilyn series including Marilyn Diptych, and Twenty-Five Colored Marilyn’s.
- Andy Warhol’s Vincente Minnelli is a strictly black and white portrait, devoid of the bright colors that characterize the majority of his work
- This image stems from one of many sketches that Warhol produced ranging from magazine cover mockups to still lifes of animals and people.
- Vincente Minnelli is done in black ink on a white canvas in a sketchy style meant to quickly capture his subject’s likeness and personality, instead of large thick areas saturated with color and paint, which characterize the Pop Art style that he was known for.
- These 10 screen prints were the result of a conversation about ecological issues between Warhol and art dealers Ronald and Frayda Feldman. The Feldmans were long-time political and environmental activists. Since Warhol himself was also an animal lover, this commission gave rise to the ten colored silkscreen prints each featuring an endangered species at the time.
- Like he had done with the portraits of celebrities, the animals are colored vibrantly, a quality Warhol described as “animals in makeup.” Warhol thus honors the animals by placing them on a level of superstardom, reminding viewers of the importance these animals hold on a global level.
- Since its conception, the portfolio has been exhibited all over the world, many prints gifted by Andy Warhol to charities concerned with preserving the natural environment.
Truck Complete Portfolio
- Truck was published in conjunction with the Bundesverband des Deutschen Guterfernverkehrs to celebrate the 20th World Congress of International Road Transportation Union.
- The Truck Complete Portfolio was printed in 1985 by Rupert Jasen Smith, New York.
- This series showcases Warhol’s technique of multiple layering of saturated colors.
- Ali was a difficult subject because he did not want warhol to photograph or make screenprints of him. Warhol managed to snap a few polaroids of him during a marathon session. Funnily enough, Ali owns a complete suite of the series himself.
- This set is apart of Warhol’s ‘Athletes’ series and this project was initiated by the sports enthusiast and art collector Richard Weisman. Even though Warhol wasn’t a fan of sports himself, he did see an interest in the realm of an athlete’s celebrity and fame.
- For Ali, the image of his fist symbolizes his success, his identity and his celebrity. The print captures the athlete at the height of his fame and talent.
- The Skulls series includes six prints that were each made from unstretched canvas that had been rolled out on The Factory floor. The vivacity of the vibrant hues place emphasis on the macabre subject matter.
- Art historians have suggested that the increase of dark subjects can be linked to his near fatal shooting in 1968. Others have also suggested that the use of a skull as his motif stems from Warhol’s desire to evoke the human condition.
- Rupert Smith took the images of the skull that appear in the prints, he was Warhol’s assistant to The Factory and played a pivotal role in helping with the process of silk-screens and films.
- The John Gotti series was commissioned for TIME Magazine and was created in 1986 just after Gotti had been arrested and was standing trial for racketeering, which he was acquitted.
- TIME Magazine was familiar with Warhol’s work being primarily of Fame, Wealth and Beauty, which is why they chose Warhol for this, and as a result it became the cover of the September 1986 issue of TIME entitled, “Mafia on Trial”.
- By the time the issue had been released, John Gotti was arrested for murder
- Flash features text taken from the teletyped news broadcast as it was received, and images based on the front page newspaper the morning after. This is where the name Flash comes in. It includes 11 screenprints and captures the moments both before and after the assassination.
- Andy Warhol was fascinated with John F. Kennedy’s assassination and the media’s depiction of it. This portfolio exemplifies his obsession with both tragedy and celebrity.
- The Flash series also ranges in order with the images the media received live. From the joy John F. Kennedy and Jackie exuded before the assassination, to after the assassination, then Jackie’s expression of mourning and loss. Also included is an ad for the gun used, and the building where Lee Harvey Oswald stood when he shot John F. Kennedy.
- The Electric Chair series was created the same year the two final executions in New York. Over the next decade he repeatedly used returned to the subject, reflecting the political controversy surrounding the death penalty in the 1960’s.
- Bringing the electric chair to the foreground with the many variations of color in this particular series, was meant to “empty” it of its meaning.
- The image of the unoccupied electric chair in an empty execution chamber is a poignant metaphor of death.
- The Warhol Gun painting is a unique work on canvas that portray’s the commercialization of violence in society.
- Warhol’s fascination with death had always been present, especially after he was shot by Valerie Solanis in 1968.
- This particular Gun is the same make and model of the Gun used to shoot Warhol.
- The Camouflage series is among one of the very last series Andy Warhol created. He was alive long enough to show the series once, and had not been able to sign them before he died in 1987. Consequently, the editioned prints of Camouflage prints are signed and stamped by Frederick Hughes, the executor of his estate
- Andy Warhol was responsible for bringing Camouflage into high fashion. A supposed “War in High Fashion”. Prior to the series he collaborated with Stephen Rousse to create a line of camo clothing.
- As Warhol invented more camouflage works he incorporated the pattern into his self-portraits
- To have a portrait painted by Andy Warhol carried incredible prestige and in many circles was considered the ultimate form of social validation. These were members of the social elite who wished to be elevated to the status of his other subjects – iconic brands and superstars, but Warhol did more than just iconify his subjects; he immortalized them.
- 4 of the 16 prints from the Socialites series have the addition of actual finger paint done by Warhol.
- Prior to Revolver Gallery obtaining the series, Socialites was kept private by the Warhol foundation
Ladies and Gentleman
- The 1970s represented the height of Studio 54 as the United States entered a more liberal mindset. During this time, the homosexual and drag community began boldly embracing their sexuality. This series is a representation of this movement.
- The idea for the series originally came from art dealer Luciano Anselmino. Under Warhol’s direction, Bob Colacello, editor of Interview magazine, recruited several black and Hispanic drag queens from the The Gilded Grape in Greenwich village
- Warhol was undeniably fascinated by these performers who represented self-fashioned personas in a glamorous, exhibitionist manner. This series was first exhibited in Italy at the Palazzo di Diamente and there are 10 prints.
- Keith Haring met Andy Warhol in 1984 following his second exhibition in New York at the Tony Shafrazi Gallery.
- Keith Haring and Andy Warhol quickly discovered a mutual admiration for Walt Disney. For his exuberant character Andy Mouse, Keith Haring combined two of his heroes, Andy Warhol and Walt Disney.
- It has been noticed by many that Andy as Mickey Mouse, the money and the bright colors in this piece, it is not only a portrayal of Andy, but much of what American Culture has held beloved and popular.
Candy Box (True Love)
- Andy Warhol Candy Box (True Love) encompasses Warhol’s long-standing relationship with both consumerism and love of chocolate.
- This 1984 screenprint belongs to a series inspired by the iconic heart-shaped chocolate box. English chocolatier, Richard Cadbury, is credited with its invention.
- The scheme behind its conception was its continual use as storage for everything from love letters to locks of hair. Candy Box (True Love) may be perceived as a nod to earlier iconic consumer products.
- The Dollar Sign series was the ultimate manifestation of Andy Warhol’s love affair with money. He once said, “I like money on the wall.” Thus spawing the proof with these prints.
- These screenprints feature dollar signs using a sketchy subtle quality, making a noteable reference to comic strips.
- Andy Warhol was the first among many to use the Dollar Sign as a motif in art. He capitalized on a symbol we use everyday, to make us see it a different way.
- In the early 1950’s, Shoes were among Andy Warhol’s first subjects when he worked as a commercial fashion illustrator in New York City. In 1980 after he later rose to fame he returned with a more refined and dazzling series of Shoes featuring diamond dust.
- The Diamond Dust idea came from Rupert Smith, who had used it on a few of his own prints. He foolishly told Andy where to buy it, and later was surprised when it began to appear on Andy’s prints as well. He told Rupert, “Oh, it fell on my art and just stuck.”
- In the late 1980’s after Warhol had reached success, he was inspired to create a series which paid homage to his beginnings as a commercial illustrator. His Shoes series was created alongside prints featuring identical images of shoes, but the second series is accented by multi-colors.
Alexander The Great
- Alexander The Great is the only classical subject Warhol has ever adapted into his own prints.
- In the 1980’s Andy Warhol created his first prints based on paintings famous in art history. Alexander The Great is one of three with this subject matter.
- Alexander the Great is the only print Andy Warhol based on a Sculpture.
- Among Celebrities and high life, Warhol created prints based on politics including John F. Kennedy, Mao and Ronald Reagan.
- Vote Mcgovern is Andy Warhol’s snark reply to the election of 1968. Andy typically stayed silent in regards to his political views, however the evident meaning behind this peace speaks volumes with little words.
- In 2016, Deborah Kass created her own rendition of Vote Mcgovern with Vote Hillary, in regard to the 2016 election between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. Her style of art is very complimentary to Warhol’s.
- In 1985 Andy Warhol was famously quoted saying, “I want to be as famous as the Queen of England”. He then created the Reigning Queens series screenprints, a portfolio of sixteen works featuring female monarchs of the time.
- An emphasis of Glamour with The Reigning Queens series, includes special additions of diamond dust so the prints would sparkle in the light.
- Each Queen depicted in this series ruled in their own right, aside from marriage. The images represent female autonomy and feminine power.
Cowboys and Indians
- The Cowboys and Indians series depicts an interspersed variety of recognizable and lesser known portraits of American Heroes. Andy Warhol broke the images down into easily understood prints that capture the eye and the essence of each character and symbol.
- Annie Oakley and Mother and Child were images that were taken from the Hollywood film adaptations, and the Cowboys were meant to be romanticised, thus creating an ahistorical representation of the West that America is popular with.
- Warhol’s Cowboys and Indians may not be glamorous but they are just as iconic and celebrated in American history as any movie or rock star.
- In the 1950’s and 1960’s, Ronald Reagan was featured in a series of advertisements for Van Heusen dress shirts while he was still an actor.
- Andy Warhol found inspiration in Ronald Reagan’s pre-presidency career. What intrigued him was the that Reagan had gone from Hollywood to presidency, which is not surprising given how infatuated with celebrities, fame, and his political prints.
- These advertisements were not simply a means to sell products, but had become an integral part of American culture. Warhol additionally created screenprints of ad by Apple and the Mobilgas logos, along with Judy Garland who also did ads for Van Heusen.
The New Spirit
- This print of Donald Duck comes from a Disney short about wartime propaganda along with Disney humor. In the earlier years of Disney, they predominantly created political satire cartoons.
- The image used for this print came from a 1943 Documentary feature that was nominated for best Documentary and encourages the public to pay their income taxes without complaining.
- The New Spirit is part of a 10 screenprints in the Ads series,
- Martha Graham was a largely influential American modern dancer and choreographer, she even received the highest civilian honor in the United States: the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
- Andy Warhol created The Lamentation in honor of the 60th anniversary of the Martha Graham Center of Contemporary Dance in New York.
- In 1930, Graham performed Lamentation which was a dance meant to express the emotion of grief through the use of her constant pulling and stretching of a cloth as a symbol of her lament.
- Ingrid Bergman was an acclaimed Swedish actress who won various awards including the Academy Award, Emmy Award and Golden Globe Award for her work in both European and American films.
- Bergman is most well-known for her roles in Casablanca (1942) and the Alfred Hitchcock film Notorious (1946).
- Warhol created Ingrid Bergman with Hat in 1983, a year after she died from breast cancer.
- Chris Makos is an American photographer and artist who was majorly influenced by Man Ray after working with him in Paris.
- Makos played a huge part in Warhol’s career as he introduced Warhol to the work of Jean-Michael Basquiat and Keith Haring.
- Andy Warhol, along with other celebrities, is featured in Chris Makos’ Icons portfolio.
- Marshall Swerman is an American photographer who was born in Pennsylvania (like Andy Warhol) and currently resides in Los Angeles.
- He is a self-taught photographer who specializes in black and white photography.
- At the young age of 22, Swerman photographed Andy Warhol in The Factory to create these iconic portraits of the pop icon.
- Edward Moore “Ted” Kennedy was an American politician and lawyer who served as a Senator for the state of Massachusetts.
- He was the youngest brother to John F. Kennedy and Robert F. Kennedy, both of whom were assassinated.
- Ted Kennedy is infamous for the Chappaquiddick Incident in which according to his testimony, Kennedy accidentally drove off a bridge into a tide canal. He managed to escape the vehicle and swim to safety, however his passenger Mary Jo Kopechne was trapped inside the car and drowned.
- Jacqueline Lee “Jackie” Kennedy Onassis was the wife of John F. Kennedy and served as the First Lady of the United States from 1961 until the President’s assassination in 1963.
- Andy Warhol, very intrigued by tragedy became very interested in Jackie Kennedy after the assassination as in 1964 he created more than 300 Jackie paintings.
- Warhol cropped images of Jackie to create close-ups to capture not only her extreme grief in this tragic time, but also her grace and beauty.
- Jane Fonda is a legendary American actress who is best known for her work in the 1960’s including her role in Barbarella which established her status as a sex symbol.
- Fonda describes herself as a feminist and political activist for her work in the 1960’s supporting the Civil Rights Movement and opposing the Vietnam War.
- This particular print of Fonda further shows Andy’s obsession with stardom. Additionally, this print was given to her husband at the time, Tom Hayden by Andy Warhol for a fundraiser.
- Jump boots were the standard footwear for paratroopers especially come WWII.
- The boots featured sturdy toe caps and shoelaces which went up to the calf; jumpers would tie the laces in a ladder or cobweb style for further ankle support when landing.
- In some countries, paratroopers could earn more modern jump boots as a mark of achievement.
- During the time of the Cold War, Andy Warhol created these black and white screen prints created by tracing the original image by hand, this tactic created a looser more graphic aesthetic.
- Paying attention to the political climate, Andy Warhol screen prints which related to themes of war, death and religion.
- Andy Warhol’s representation of the hand cradling nuclear power alludes to the threat of nuclear warfare lying in the hands of the United States and the U.S.S.R.
- Andy Warhol was commissioned to create this piece which features a different composition to what Warhol is known for: a still-life.
- The vibrant colors and duplicity of outlines creates this feeling of movement even within a still-life.
- Andy, highly intrigued by consumer culture, depicts this small portion of a celebration scene featuring fallen champagne glasses and confetti exploding down the lower portion of the composition.
Dollar Sign 4
- The dollar sign is an internationally recognized symbol for units of currency in several countries around the world, including the United States.
- Andy Warhol used the dollar sign repeatedly throughout his career as the dollar sign stands as the epitome of the relationship between art and the commercial world.
- The dollar sign is an icon which is recognizable to all levels of society, this element of accessibility was an area of interest for Warhol.
- The Marx Brothers were a group of American brothers who were best-known for their comedy acts in the vaudeville, Broadway, and motion pictures scene.
- The Marx Brothers were highly acclaimed in that five of their thirteen films feature films were selected by the American Film Institute as part of the top 100 comedy films.
- Furthermore, they are widely acclaimed to be the most influential comedians of the 20th This stardom plays a major role in what attracted Andy Warhol to depicting a few members of the group in a print.
- Truman Capote was an American novelist who is well-known for his works Breakfast at Tiffany’s and In Cold Blood.
- Warhol’s obsession with celebrities continues with his portrait of Capote as the author was a major icon in his time within the LGBTQ+ community.
- While Capote never truly voiced his direct support for the gay rights movement, his openness in his sexuality and encouragement of others to follow posed him as a figure within the movement.
Campbell’s Tomato Juice Box
- In his New York studio, Warhol and his assistants screen printed about 40 Campbell’s Tomato Juice Box sculptures one after the other like a machine alluding to the studio’s name: The Factory.
- Andy Warhol believed “[art] should be for the mass of the American people” and with this sentiment created images like the Campbell’s Tomato Juice Box which would appeal to people at all levels of society.
- The Campbell’s Tomato Juice Boxes along with the Heinz Ketchup Boxes were installed at the Stable Gallery, New York in 1964.
Andy’s Rolls Royce
- Andy Warhol had an appreciation for high-end automobiles, his last work before his death was a commission of car portraits for Mercedes-Benz.
- The 1974 Rolls Royce Silver Shadow was owned by Andy Warhol until his death in 1987, the following year the car along with Warhol’s estate was auctioned at Sotheby’s.
- The Rolls Royce Silver Shadow was one of the highlights of the Sotheby’s sale in New York which generated $25 million.