Showcasing Warhol’s distinctive style in a vivid and comprehensive collection, Olyvia Fine Art exhibits Andy Warhol: Portraits which runs untill the 6th of June 2010. Featuring unique paintings and prints that many may have never seen before and test screen films from 1964 -’66, including Eddie Sedgwick, Dennis Hopper, Lou Reed and Nico.
Unidentified Woman (Lady Rosenthal’s sister)1980, synthetic polymer paint and silkscreen on canvas 101.6cm x 101.6cm portrays the subject in a doll-like manner with exaggerated features; cherry-red lips and ‘Liza Minelli eyes’ give it – and many others included – a cartoon-like feel which Warhol championed and became an integral part of the pop art movement which Warhol instigated.
Never one to shy away from controversy, Andy Warhol’s work is as popular now as he ever was, with an original print selling recently for 72 million. If you can’t quite stretch to those kind of heady figures, Warhol prints are easily accessible the many greeting cards on sale. Despite dying over 20 years ago, his influence and legend live on. Having held court to many famous fashion designers including Yves Saint Laurent and Diane Von Forstenberg, I’m sure it would’ve pleased Andy to see his prints re-born in sartorial form like this Versace evening gown from 1991, one of his most celebrated, held at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Anyone that saw Alistair Sooke’s Modern Masters on BBC 1 last week will know that in the mid ’60s, Warhol gave up on painting and began managing The Velvet Underground, introducing them to the German singer, Nico, who featured on their first album which Andy famously designed the peelable, banana cover for. It has been said that through his silver Factory he influenced the punk scene of the 1970s and I will explore the routes of this musical genre in depth next week with PJ Crittenden including sound clips.
A precursor to celebrity magazines such as Hello and OK, Warhol started Interview magazine in the late ’60s, concentrating on movie stars, in a bid to be invited to movie premiers and other hot celebrity-filled events. Starting life as ‘inter/VIEW’ the interviews were unedited and often rambled on for pages and pages and it fufilled his need to immerse himself in celebrity but believing everyone would have their 15 minutes of fame, he said, “I tell everyone they can be on the cover of Interview”. This view was immortalised by David Bowie in his song, Andy Warhol with the line: ” I’d like to be a gallery, put you all inside my show…”