INVENTING AMERICA: ROCKWELL AND WARHOL

June 10, 2017 through October 29, 2017

Inventing America: Rockwell and Warhol is the first exhibition linking Norman Rockwell and Andy Warhol, two iconic visual communicators who embraced populism, shaped national identity, and opened new ways of seeing in twentieth century America. This immersive exploration, organized by Norman Rockwell Museum, will reveal the sweeping artistic and cultural influence of these celebrated image-makers and the continued influence of their indelible legacies. Original iconic artworks; process materials and studies; archival photography, manuscripts, and documents; film/video footage; and props, costumes, and personal artifacts will be on view.

Sponsored by The Hayseed Hill Foundation, Inc. and The Red Lion Inn.

Photo of Andy Warhol, 1964

Norman Rockwell Freedom from Want, 1943. Oil on canvas. Collection of Norman Rockwell Museum, NRACT.1973.022

Andy Warhol. Campbell’s Soup Can, 1969. Color silkscreen on paper. Collection of Williams College Museum of Art; Gift of Richard F. Holmes, Class of 1946

ABOUT THE ARTISTS

Andy Warhol (born Andrew Warhola; August 6, 1928 – February 22, 1987) was an American artist who was a leading figure in the visual art movement known as Pop Art. His works explore the relationship of artistic expression, celebrity culture, and consumerism of the era.

Though he came from humble beginnings in Pittsburgh, PA, Warhol achieved a successful career as a commercial illustrator in Manhattan in the 1950s and soon became a renowned and sometimes controversial artist. His art traversed several types of media, including drawing, painting, printmaking, photography, silk screening, sculpture, film, and music. His studio, The Factory, was a well-known gathering place that brought together distinguished intellectuals, musicians, playwrights, Bohemian street people, Hollywood celebrities, and wealthy patrons.  He managed and helped popularize The Velvet Underground, a rock band which had a strong influence on the evolution of punk rock music. He founded Interview magazine and was the author of numerous books, including The Philosophy of Andy Warhol and Popism: The Warhol Sixties. He is also notable for the oft-cited expression “in the future, everyone will be world famous for 15 minutes.”

Born in New York City in 1894, Norman Rockwell always wanted to be an artist. At age 14, Rockwell enrolled in art classes at The New York School of Art (formerly The Chase School of Art). Two years later, in 1910, he left high school to study art at The National Academy of Design. He soon transferred to The Art Students League, where he studied with Thomas Fogarty and George Bridgman. Fogarty’s instruction in illustration prepared Rockwell for his first commercial commissions. From Bridgman, Rockwell learned the technical skills on which he relied throughout his long career.

Rockwell found success early. He painted his first commission of four Christmas cards before his sixteenth birthday. While still in his teens, he was hired as art director of Boys’ Life, the official publication of the Boy Scouts of America, and began a successful freelance career illustrating a variety of young people’s publications.

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