When considering the appeal of Andy Warhol Prints, we think of the eccentric Pop Art trendsetter who forever changed the world with his manipulation of modern icons. In doing so, Andy Warhol brought insights that prompted conversations about how Americans consume. How we consume art, celebrity and commercial goods – all with an unending need for something bigger, bolder and more magnificent than what we’ve devoured previously! Today, Warhol’s genius still makes us feel strong emotions when viewing his work, and like the chicken or the egg query, it’s difficult to know if we are emotionally charged by his work because of what we know about the artist, or if it’s the innate electricity of the work that supercedes.
Warhol’s 1967 Marilyn series of prints were key participants in a collective period of reflection for a grieving public struggling to create context for the finality of this Hollywood celebrity life. Monroe, whose glamour made her a “larger than life” figure had become a focal point for something else in death – and Warhol captured it eerily. Each Andy Warhol Marilyn produced new opportunities for the artist to canonize the starlet, yet in doing so, he exposed something thin, fading and artificial about her image. Perhaps Warhol was demonstrating that it is we, the public, who made Marilyn what she became, and his art captures a particular truth that it is we who have the power to define her in death as well.
Warhol’s treatment of inanimate objects could be equally insightful and otherworldly. For example, Andy Warhol’s 1980 Shoes series of prints that feature women’s shoes against a black color field, adorned with Diamond Dust. In the monochromatic version currently on sale at Vertu Fine Art, four different styles of black shoes give the appearance of floating through time and space. The light reflected from the Diamond Dust illuminates the odd juxtaposition of individual shoes haphazardly presented void of any obvious commercial message.
Diamond Dust also proves to be a harmonious fit within the various screenprints from Warhol’s “Myths” portfolio − as if a bit of Disney pixie dust escorted Mickey Mouse and a host of fictitious characters swiftly into the Andy Warhol Zone. By the 1980s, it seemed that a new celebrity was being eternalized by the artist daily, and after patiently waiting on line, it was finally Mickey’s turn.
Like Pop culture itself, Warhol’s works vacillated in themes between light and dark. His 1979 screenprint portrait of Georgia O’Keefe glimmers with Diamond Dust, but reveals a cold and dark perspective of the aging artist. The stark contrast between the brightness of the subject’s clothes and darkness of her skin seems to indicate that Ms. O’Keefe in her later years is sharing an increasing oneness with the cool black universe that surrounds her.
At VFA, we’re showcasing a number of new dramatic large scale prints by Andy Warhol that can best be appreciated by being viewed in person. If you’re in the vicinity of our Boca Raton Gallery, please visit. If you are a collector seeking a specific piece of Pop, Optical or Abstract Expressionist Art, feel free to contact us for assistance.