Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Campbell’s Soup Cans by Andy Warhol (1962)

Our artist here is one of the leading figures of early American pop art. His work is oblivious to the effort, but more in contact with value of mass production of pop culture. Working with partial expressive style of art, he quickly switched his focus to a more general representation without any personal touch on the actual canvas. This is not necessarily bad or anything in that extent, but it is rather another way for our artist to express himself.

During the time around this specific art, he had a main focus on four curtain elements that was echoing in society at the time.

1.      Press photos of accidents

2.      Consumer goods (Campbell, Coca Cola)

3.      Flowers

4.      Famous people (Elvis Presley, Marilyn Monroe)

The specific piece that is depicted in this blog is the consumer goods, Campbell’s Soup Cans, and it is interesting on many aspects. When looking at presentation of it, it looks as 32 repetitive cans, but it is actually the 32 varieties that the company of Campbell was offering at the time being.

One would discuss whether this art is art in the essence or not, but sentimentally it is said that Mr. Warhol used to prepare the soup cans with his brother as a child, because his mother was sick, and his father was absent. I chose to believe in that because Mr. Warhol presented himself as a fine artist, and it is no secret that a repetitive patterns between artists of any genre to bring up the emotional artistic skills and memories from their childhood.

Warhol made use of industrial pop revolution by mass producing his art through photography means, but prior to that, he used the technique of silk screening.

Here is a little tutorial for silk screening

I personally thought of this to be very simplistic and non-artistic, but with further implication I believe it is more about conveying a message and about monetary value. It is of value to me even though I didn’t grow up with Campbell, but I can imagine what message it must send to people that actually grew up around it.

Furthermore, I have added some more of Andy Warhol’s work so that one can see how his ‘Factory’ of workers mass produced simple element and figures to the public. Please check the sources for interesting articles depicted Andy Warhol and his art.


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