“Andy Warhol: Fame and Misfortune” To Open In February 2012

Andy Warhol, Skull, 1976. Acrylic and screen-printing ink on linen

Andy Warhol, Skull, 1976. Acrylic and screen-printing ink on linen, 72⅛ × 80½ in. Founding Collection, Contribution Dia Center for the Arts, 2002.4.31 © 2011 The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc./Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York.

Drawn from the rich collections of the Andy Warhol Museum in the artist’s hometown of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Andy Warhol: Fame and Misfortune assembles over 150 objects in all media. Organized by the McNay’s Chief Curator and Curator of Art after 1945, René Paul Barilleaux, this exhibition looks simultaneously at Warhol’s lifelong obsession with both celebrity and disaster. Works included in this survey juxtapose icons of popular culture, legendary entertainers, art world luminaries, and world leaders, with images of suicides, automobile accidents, skulls, and an electric chair. Beginning in the mid-1950s and continuing through 1986, the year prior to Warhol’s death, the paintings, drawings, prints, photographs, and films span the three prolific decades of the artist’s career. Source images for Warhol’s most notable works deepen appreciation of what inspired the artist and offer clues to his working process. Self-portraits and photographs of Warhol by his contemporaries evoke the artist’s presence throughout the exhibition galleries.

Andy Warhol: Fame and Misfortune is accompanied by an 80-page catalogue with an introduction by Barilleaux, and an essay by Justin Spring. Spring examines the exhibition’s dual themes as depicted in the works selected for this overview, and places the themes within the larger context of the artist’s life and career. Spring also focuses on Warhol’s recycling of favorite sources and familiar subjects, constantly reinventing pictures over his lifetime. The catalogue also includes reproductions of all paintings and sculpture presented in the exhibition plus a small sampling of key Warhol drawings, prints, and photographs, as well as source photographs for iconic early works and portraits of the artist.

Source: McNay Museum

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