Andy Warhol online at the Tate Modern

An exhibition on Andy Warhol from two different perspectives: on the one hand, an excursus on this pop-art artist known and revered for his most iconic works – the serigraphs of Marilyn and Elvis, Coca-Cola and Campbell soup -; on the other, the exploration of Warhol starting from his biography and his struggle for a gender and artistic identity.
From the words of the curators themselves: “We wanted to expose Warhol outside of trends and fashions, showing him instead through three different lenses: his history of immigration, his gay identity and the idea of ​​death and religion.”

The Video

The exhibition at Tate Modern in London was inaugurated in early March, but was soon reorganised because of the lockdown measures. An integral part of the re-imagined online exhibition is a seven-minute video – “Exhibition Tour” – available on YouTube in which the two Tate curators, Gregor Muir and Fiontán Moran, explain the interpretative perspective of this retrospective, and accompany the viewer through the 12 dedicated rooms of the Tate. In the video, we get into the moments that marked the life of the American artist through art and documents. First of all the difficulties due to his origins as an immigrant in Pittsburg: the certificates of the arrival in the United States of his family with original name Warhola are there to testify it. Then, the attempted murder by Valerie Solanas, whose signs are immortalized in the photos of his chest taken by Richard Avedon. Finally, his insecurity and poor acceptance of his body, materialized in his collection of white toupés.

Ecco il video:

The Guide

In the online written guide, however, the enthusiast and the curious of Warhol can read and understand the path of the 12 rooms of the exhibition.
Each room represents a period in Warhol’s life exemplified by a work:

  • Room 1, “Andrew Warhola”: his self-portrait in green from 1964.

    andy warhol - self portrait
    Andy Warhol
    Self Portrait 1986
    © 2020 The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc. / Licensed by DACS, London.
  • Room 2, “Sleep”: the experimental film of the same name of 1963 in which a man is filmed while sleeping for over 5 hours.
  • Room 3, “Pop”: the series of serigraphs of Elvis Presley.
  • Room 4, “The Factory””: screen tests intended as video portraits of the years 1964, 1965,1966.
  • Room 5, “Silver Clouds”: he installation of Silver Clouds from 1965.
  • Room 6, “Exploding Plastic Inevitable”: the collaboration with the rock band Velvet Underground which led to the multimedia project “Exploding Plastic Inevitable” of 1966.
  • Room 7, “The Shooting”: Avendon’s shots of Warhol’s torn chest after the attempted murder in 1969..
  • Room 8, “Back to work”: the portrait of the Chinese president Mao Zedong..
  • Room 9, “Ladies and gentlemen”: the 1975 series of portraits of the underground queer of the same name commissioned by the Italian gallery owner Luciano Anselmino.
  • Room 10, “Exposures”: the “Torso” series of male bodies from 1977.
  • Room 11, “Mortal Coil”: his Statue of Liberty drawn on a tin box for French biscuits on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the Eiffel monument.
  • Room 12, “The Last Supper”: the series of “Sixty last suppers”, an all Warholian reworking of Leonardo’s masterpiece starting from copies of the original, including images produced for commercial use and a famous 19th century engraving.

Cover photo:

Andy Warhol

“Marilyn Diptych 1962”

Tate © 2020 The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc. / Licensed by DACS, London.

Target Point, Italian Ideas