Friday, August 31, 2012

Designer of the Month: Andy Warhol

Week 5: oh, Andy
In the years after I'd decided to be a loner, I got more and more popular and found myself with more and more friends. Professionally I was doing well. I had my own studio and a few people working for me, and an arrangement evolved where they actually lived at my work studio. In those days, everything was loose, flexible. The people in the studio were there night and day. Friends of friends. Maria Callas was always on the phonograph and there were lots of mirrors and a lot of tinfoil.[1]
Andy Warhol, Photo Booth Self-Portrait, ca. 1963. Gelatin silver prints. Each 7 3/4 x 1 7/16 in. (19.6 x 3.6 cm). Purchase, Rogers Fund, Joyce and Robert Menschel, Adriana and Robert Mnuchin, Harry Kahn, and Anonymous Gifts, in memory of Eugene Schwartz, 1996 (1996.63a,b). Courtesy of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.

With an extra week in August, I thought it might be fun to conclude our Designer of the Month discussion of Andy Warhol by turning the focus directly onto the man himself. As I'm sure you've noticed by now, Warhol was as comfortable in front of the camera as he was behind it. He appeared in countless photographs, self-portraits, advertisements, and magazine covers over the years, and could always be counted on to have an option on just about any and all topics. So this week, rather than delving deeper into his life and work, I've instead pulled together a few last quotes, photographs and clips that I think best capture Warhol himself.

George Lois, Andy Warhol Drowns In His Own Soup, May 1969 cover of Esquire
I never fall apart because I never fall together. I just sit there saying, 'I'm going to faint. I'm going to faint. I know I'm going to faint. Have I fainted yet? I'm going to faint.' When I'm on television I can't think about anything they're going to ask me, I can't think about anything that's going to come out of my mouth - all I can think about is, 'Is this a live show? It is? Well then forget it, I'm going to faint. I'm waiting for a faint.' That's mt live television appearance stream-of-consciousness. Taped is different.[2]

Andy Warhol on The Love Boat, 1985. Courtesy of LACM on Fire.
The wrong people always look so right to me. And when you've got a lot of people and they're all 'good,' it's hard to make distinctions, the easiest thing is to pick the really bad person. And I always go after the easiest thing, because if it's the easiest, it's usually the best.[3]

Burt Glinn, Andy Warhol, Edie Sedgwick and Chuck Wein, 1965.

Once again, I would be remiss not to thank The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts. Without them, I would never have had access to such a wide array of fantastic research material about Andy Warhol's art and life. Thanks again!

[1] Andy Warhol, The Philosophy of Andy Warhol (From A to B & Back Again), (New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1928), 24.

[2] Ibid., 81.

[3] Ibid., 83.

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