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Andy Warhol - Flash F.S. II 32 sig blur jpg
Andy Warhol - Flash F.S. II 32 hanging jpg
Andy Warhol - Flash F.S. II 32 hanging jpg
Andy Warhol - Flash 32 wd jpg

Flash 32

Catalogue Title: Flash﹣November 22, 1963 (FS II.32)

Year: 1968

Size: 21” x 21”

Medium: Portfolio of eleven screenprints, colophon, and Teletype text on paper

Edition: Edition of 200, 26 numbered in Roman numerals; 10 lettered A-J have three additional screenprints, each of which is a composite of images from II.33 and II.38. (See II.43A-43C.) Each print, housed in a folder with a page of Teletype text, is signed in ball-point pen on verso; the colophon is signed and numbered in ball-point pen.

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Flash 32 by Andy Warhol is part of a portfolio of eleven different screenprints based on the assassination of President John F. Kennedy on November 22, 1963. The portfolio was named for all the “news flash” texts that were being broadcast at the time. Flash 32 is the first print in the portfolio. The title Flash – November 22, 1963 represents the date of the assassination and the constant news attention surrounding the event. This print sets a somber tone as President Kennedy’s face is drowned in hues of black and dark grey, making him almost unrecognizable. The piece features a close-up of JFK’s smile. The emphasis on his smile highlights his charisma and almost puts the viewer under his spell. His smile captures the essence of the politician and engulfs the viewer in the “Kennedy Effect.”

Flash 32 by Andy Warhol as Part of His Larger Body of Work

Warhol’s Flash 32 has a clear connection to the work he did focusing on Jacqueline Kennedy. However, now he is focusing on the man himself and the events surrounding his assassination. The piece captures the moment which enchanted most people at the timethe moment when the charming President Kennedy smiled. His infectious smile affected everyone who was exposed to it. Additionally, the very dark filter on Flash 32 is symbolic of the doom that befell Kennedy in the form of his murder. With this series, Warhol is observing American society, including its relationship with the media; he becomes fascinated with society’s obsession with tragedy, which he returns to in later works.

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