Andy Warhol

Andy Warhol, born in Pittsburgh in the 1930s, is considered one of the greatest artistic geniuses of his century. He was not only a painter but also a sculptor, screenwriter, film producer, director and actor. Major figure of the Pop art movement is remembered as one of the most influential artists of the twentieth century.

He began studying Commercial Art at the Carnegie Institute of Technology in Pittsburgh. After graduation, he moved to New York and the "big apple" immediately offered him many possibilities to establish himself in the world of Advertising: he worked for celebrated magazines such as Vogue and Glamour.

Repetition on a large scale was his method of success: he reproduced on large canvases the same image many times, altering its usual bright, strong and visually striking colours. Through advertising images of the major commercial brands, such as Coca-Cola bottles - among his most famous and remembered works - or impact images such as road accidents and electric chairs, he was able to empty the imagery he represented of any meaning.

His art, which got the shelves of a supermarket in a museum or an exhibition, was a provocation not even too veiled. In fact to Warhol art had to be "consumed" like any other commercial product.

He often reiterated that mass products represent social democracy and as such must be recognized: even the poorest can drink the same Coca-Cola that any iconic character drinks.

His artistic activity includes many works, which he produced in series with the help of the screen printing system. Among his most famous masterpieces there are representations of the most famous characters of that period, who have now become real icons: Marilyn Monroe, Michael Jackson, Elvis Presley, Elizabeth Taylor and also some family members.

Through the analysis of Pop Art images and works, it has been understood how the economic boom of the 50s and 60s started the consumer society to which we also belong.

After his death, the fame and the quotation of the works of Andy Warhol grew to the point of making him the "second most bought and sold artist in the world after Pablo Picasso".

April 14, 2020 — Riccardo Nicosia

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