In 1928 a Slovakian family welcomed a new member to their humble home in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. His name was Andrew Warhola. Andrew was a weak boy and often picked on by his fellow classmates. At a young age he suffered from a rare neurological disorder that left him bedridden and he sought comfort in comic books and magazines. His motheroften rewarded him with chocolates after having completed colouring in his books.
This may have sparked Andrew’s affinity for the arts from an early age.
As a young adult, Andrew moved to New York to chase his dreams. He dressed in awkward suits and wore old shoes. His work was rejected time after time. But because he such had a distinct style in the works he presented, he drew the attention of Vogue and Seventeen magazines and from then on he moved up the ladder to fame, becoming one of the most sought after commercial artists of his time. He had evolved to the man the world knows today as Andy Warhol, dressing in black and white, wearing sunglasses and eccentric wigs, which would become his signature look.
Warhol’s most iconic works were the prints, Campbell’s Soup Can and Marilyn Monroe, just to name a few.
At first glance, the soup can may seem to be just a symbol of consumerism. However, this piece was actually a tribute to his mother as she had often served him this soup.
It gave him a sense of love and comfort. This was a representation of the warmth of mother’s love. As for the screen painting of Marilyn Monroe, it was completed shortly after she had committed suicide. Warhol had long been intrigued by celebrity and during his younger years kept albums filled with pictures and autographs of stars.
Before his fame, young and shy Andrew Wahola would probably never have thought that he would become a pop star who would become more famous than some of hollywood stars that he idolized. (To be continued in the next issue.)