A few days ago I had the opportunity to visit the Andy Warhol retrospective at La Fabbrica del Vapore in Milan. For me and my friend Ali, who accompanied me, it was an opportunity to spend a morning immersed in the artistic universe of Andy Warhol, who has always been one of my favorite artists and whose work I had already seen on display at MoMa in NYC.
It had been ten years since the last art exhibition dedicated to Andy Warhol in Milan (his works have been showcased in the city on several occasions in the past decades), and for this retrospective there were more than 300 works by the artist, many of them previously unseen. The exhibition reconstructs the various historical periods in which he was a protagonist of the art scene, spanning the fields of fashion and visual arts. It starts from the period of the 1950s, in which Andy Warhol began a brilliant career as a graphic designer, through the 1960s, in which much of his most famous artistic production takes place (Campbell’s Soup Cans date from that period of time, but also portraits such as that of Marilyn Monroe and Liz Taylor). The 1970s and 1980s were a decisive and very interesting time for Andy Warhol’s career, as I am currently having the opportunity to read in The Andy Warhol Diaries edited by Pat Hackett and published by Penguin Classics; through Warhol’s voice you get to have a glimpse at the famous personalities of the era, including fashion designers, socialites and contributors to Interview, a pop culture magazine founded by the artist himself and still on newsstands today. In the Diaries, Warhol kept track of his personal expenses, expressed his opinions and feelings about many events of those years, characterized by hard work, parties and social events, as well as important collaborations with legendary artists such as Keith Haring and Jean Michel Basquiat. I have almost finished reading Andy Warhol’s Diaries and I highly recommend them to everyone because I enjoyed their humor, the way they were structured, and his view of the 1980s Manhattan social scene. They are very long (more than 1100 pages) but I find them compelling in many different ways.
In the 1950s Andy Warhol made his debut on the New York art scene; a graduate of the Carnegie Institute in his hometown of Pittsburgh, he moved to Manhattan to begin his career. His talents were immediately expressed through his early work as an illustrator and advertising graphic designer for magazines such as Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar and The New Yorker, sparking a revolution in the world of advertising (a medium increasingly present in people’s daily lives) and transforming the work of art into a consumer product.READ MORE
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