Andy Warhol’s Biography Essay

September 21, 2021 by Essay Writer

Introduction

The art of painting has undergone massive evolution in its history, which spans many centuries. In its evolution process, many styles have developed thus expanding any painter’s repertoire notably.

Among the many styles that have developed over time is popular art or simply ‘pop art’, which became widespread in the second half of the 20th century. Andy Warhol emerged as the most illustrious among other pop artists. This essay seeks to examine Andy Warhol and his painting career with a focus on his style, its tenets, and his overall contribution to the art of painting.

Andy Warhol in Perspective

From a moral perspective, Warhol’s paintings do not seem to breach any norms, yet they still spurred heated discussions. However, the fact that his paintings were so intriguing to such a wide range of people is of particular interest. In addition, the reason behind his being named the “prince of pop art” is also of interest.

Andy Warhol was born in 1928 and was raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, by his parents who were both Czech emigrants (The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, 2013). His mother, being artistic, encouraged his interest in art with presents for accomplishing some minor art tasks.

In childhood, he was in and out of school most of the time due a chorea attack, which adversely affected his acceptance by other students and consequently his self-esteem. Warhol started art classes at high school level and went on to study art at the Carnegie Institute of Technology (The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, 2013).

As an artist, his career was hardly influenced by other artists, but his work widely influenced others. He discovered a technique he called the “blotted-line technique” while in high school and went on to use it at the dawn of his career. The technique earned him some recognition, but he later abandoned it and started painting on canvas.

The use of canvas led him to discover silk-screening, which he used for the rest of his career. His most remembered painting is that of Campbell’s soup cans. He died in 1987 aged 58 years after successfully surviving a surgery (The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts).

The nature of Warhol’s paintings pitches him as a spontaneous artist whose dominant theme is quite elusive to pinpoint. His paintings depict a wide range of themes ranging from love-related issues in his Love and In the Bottom of My Garden to moral issues in Late Paintings (Danto, 2009.). His style has been described as being so full of life that the paintings seem to ‘pop’ out of the canvas (Guiles, 1989).

Pop art, which Warhol practiced, emerged first in the Great Britain where it was used to criticize the British lifestyle in the 1950s (Watson, 2003). In the US, it came as a departure from convention so that artists could paint anything that was part of popular culture. In Britain, pop art was initiated and propagated by the Independent Group while in the US, the movement behind pop art was simply known as the Pop Art Movement (Watson, 2003).

While other artists espoused the idea of artistic authenticity and genius, Warhol refuted the idea and mass reproduced his work, which made his studio practice distinct from other artists to the extent of his studio being called ‘The factory’ (Watson, 2003). The public was receptive of Warhol’s work with many touting his paintings as among the best of pop art. Being named the prince of pop art supports the idea that the public loved Warhol’s work. His peers too seem not to hold anything against him.

Conclusion

Warhol’s was a great artist who receives approval from both the public and his peers. His pieces of art still intrigue many to date not to mention his influence on pop art. He was the envy of his peers in his heyday and those who emulated his style emerged as great artists. My opinion about Warhol did not change over the course of my research.

Reference List

Danto, C. (2009). Andy Warhol. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press.

Guiles, F. (1989). Loner at the Ball: The Life of Andy Warhol. New York, NY: Bantam.

The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts. (2013). Andy Warhol Biography: Pop artist and cultural icon. Retrieved from https://warholfoundation.org/legacy/biography.html

Watson, S. (2003). Factory Made: Warhol and the 1960s. New York, NY: Pantheon.

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