August - September 2016
September 18, 2016: Jonas Mekas is due to appear at the New York Art Book Fair to talk about his new project, Scrapbook of the Sixties at noon today. The Fair is run by Printed Matter, Inc. who receive funding from a number of organizations, including the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts and the Jerome Foundation.
September 11, 2016: The Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) will be hosting an exhibition devoted to the Dwan Gallery, "Los Angeles to New York: The Dwan Gallery 1959 - 1971" from March 19 - September 10, 2017.
The Dwan showed some of Warhol's box sculptures before his boxes were shown at The Stable Gallery in New York at "The Personality of the Artist" exhibition (April 21 - May 9, 1964).
The Dwan show, "Boxes," took place February 2 - 29, 1964. An exhibition catalogue was published. In addition to Warhol, the show included work from Peter Agostini, Arman, Anthony Berlant, Joseph Cornell, Jim Dine, Marcel Duchamp, Letty Eisenhauer, Marisol, Louise Nevelson, Claes Oldenburg, Robert Rauschenberg, Marital Raysse, James Rosenquist, Kurt Schwitters, Robert Watts, Tom Wesselmann and H.C. Westermann. (BX)
The Warhol boxes that were shown at the Dwan were a Heinz Tomato Ketchup and three Brillo (3¢ Off) boxes, all dated 1963. According to the cat. rais, the Heinz box might have been a prototype that was later given to Jasper Johns. Johns "recalled that Warhol asked him to return the box not long after he had given it, since he was about to make the others and wanted them all to look the same. Johns observed, 'I told him that I wanted to keep mine as it was and that I would value the difference.' (Johns traded a box later in the year for five of Warhol's Heinz boxes.) (cat rais., vol. 02A, p. 053, 058 and 088)
Warhol also showed Twenty Five Colored Marilyns (1962) in the Dwan's "My Country Tis of Thee" exhibition (November 18 - December 15, 1962) and Marilyn's Lips (1962) in their "Arena of Love" exhibition (January 5 - February 6, 1965) and. (cat. rais., vol. 1, p. 246 and 252)
In addition to work by Andy Warhol, the LACMA show will include work by Franz Kline, Claes Oldenburg, Ed Kienholz, Carl Andre, Dan Flavin, Robert Smithson, Sol LeWitt, Niki di Saint Phalle, Mel Bochner, and Nancy Holt and others.
September 7, 2016: A Robert Rauschenberg retrospective opens at the Tate Modern on December 1, 2016 and runs until April 2, 2017. As noted on the Tate's website, it will be his first retrospective since his death in 2008 and the first major exhibition of his work in the UK in 35 years. An exhibition by his boyfriend, Jasper Johns, opens at the Royal Academy on September 23, 2017 and runs until December 10, 2017. Rauschenberg and Johns were a couple from c. 1957 until 1961 and are often considered as links between Abstract Expressionism and Pop. (MK87)(MK99) One could argue that Warhol's Campbell's Soup Can was the equivalent of Johns' Flag. Prior to painting his Campbell's Soup Cans series, Warhol had purchased a drawing by Johnson of a light bulb - an object, a "thing." When later asked about his use of repetition, Warhol responded "I was looking for a thing." A soup can was a "thing" that could be reproduced repetitively - as were dollar bills, flowers and trading stamps. (See "Andy Warhol: from Nowhere to Up There," p. 30)
September 6, 2016: From the Third Eye: The Evergreen Review Film Reader will be published in June 2017 and will include writings on Warhol, Godard, Pasolini and other filmmakers. The Evergreen Review was a counter-culture mag that was in print from 1957 to 1973.
The founder of the Evergreen Review, Barney Rosset, was also the owner of Grove Press and one of the people who were targeted by Valerie Solanas after she served her time (3 years) for shooting Warhol. Although originally indicted for attempted murder, assault and illegal possession of a gun, Warhol would not testify against her in court so the charges were reduced to "reckless assault with intent to harm."
Once free, Valerie sent threatening letters to Rosset and others - including the millionaire Howard Hughes - claiming to have been kidnapped and demanding 50 million dollars for her release. She also wanted the original SCUM Manifesto published in the Daily News.
In November 1971 she showed up at Rosset's offices with an ice pick and threatened to use it. She eventually agreed to stop harassing Rosset and moved to Washington D.C. In late 1975 she returned to New York and worked as an editor for Majority Report magazine. After New York, she ended up in San Francisco where she allegedly died as a meth-addicted prostitute. (See "Valerie Solanas," p. 2)
It's unknown which articles the new Evergreen Review book is going to include, however a previous compilation, The Evergreen Review Reader (published in 1998) contains an abundance of articles, poetry and essays from the 60s, including Michael McClure's play The Beard. Unfortunately it doesn't contain an index. Hopefully the newer book will.
September 2, 2016: There will be a screening of Andy Warhol's classic film, The Chelsea Girls at the New York Public Library on September 15, 2016 from 8:30 pm - 12 am. The film will be shown as originally intended on two 16 mm projectors running concurrently.
August 29, 2016: "Warhol Pop Society" opens at the Palazo Ducale in Genova (Genoa) on October 21, 2016 and runs until February 26, 2017. Curated by Luca Beatrice, the exhibition is divided into six sections: Design, Icons, Polaroids, Portraits, Film, and Andy Warhol and Italy. Details here.
Front cover of the Autobiography of a Snake published by Thames & Hudson
August 26, 2016: The Autobiography of a Snake: Drawings by Andy Warhol will be published on October 16, 2016. The book features Warhol's drawings of a snake that he created for the leather goods company Fleming-Joffe in 1963. The book includes texts by Teddy and Arthur Edelman. Warhol created commercial art for the Edelmans from 1958 to 1963/4.
The original Autobiography of a Snake is described in Grey Art Gallery's exhibition catalogue for "Success is a job in New York..." (1989) as being 33 sheets, pencil on tracing paper and created in 1963 for the Coty American Fashion Critics Award. (p. 82) According to the Tate Modern, "Warhol began a series of illustrations, based on a character called 'Noa the Boa,' for a short film (which was unfortunately never produced) to be shown at a highly-coveted fashion-award ceremony."
Warhol wasn't the only artist who used snake imagery. Ray Johnson was also known for his snake drawings although no connection has been made between Warhol's snakes and Ray Johnson's snakes. A page from the Autobiography of a Snake, showing Warhol's snake, can be found on the Warhol Museum's site here.
Details of the forthcoming book on the publisher's website here.
August 23, 2016: Adam Starr will be curating the exhibition, "NOW SCREENING: Andy Warhol Prints," at the Pomona College Museum of Art, which runs January 17, 2017 - May 14, 2017. The show is the third in a series of exhibitions developed by student curators under the Benton Summer Undergraduate Research Program (SURP) at the Pomona College Museum of Art. Starr is a mathematician with an interest in Warhol. Details on the exhibition here.
August 22, 2016: The Houston Chronicle has published an article detailing the history of Andy Warhol's film, Sunset, which is currently showing at the The Menil Collection (see below). The article is here.
Molly Glentzer ("Andy Warhol's vision of 'Sunset' is perfectly imperfect," Houston Chronicle, August 19, 2016):
Hoping to install a pavilion at the 1968 Hemisfair World's Fair in San Antonio, the Catholic Church commissioned the University of St. Thomas Art Department (and by default, the de Menils) in 1967 to organize an exhibition of religious art. Mark Rothko had just completed his monumental paintings for the Rothko Chapel, which was in development, so the de Menils planned to show them at the fair in a purpose-built octagonal space. They also invited Robert Indiana, Roberto Matta and Tony Smith to participate; and, working through their protégée Fred Hughes (who would become Warhol's lifelong manager and confidant), they asked Warhol to create a spiritually significant film...
April 21, 2016: Dr. David Anfam (author of the Rothko cat. rais. and a number of books on Abstract Expressionist artists including Jackson Pollock, Robert Motherwell, Franz Kline, Philip Guston, Clyfford Still and Willem de Kooning) will be co-curating the Royal Academy's major exhibition of Abstract Expressionism along with Edith Devaney, Contemporary Curator at the Royal Academy of Arts. The exhibition will run from September 24, 2016 to January 2, 2017. An exhibition catalogue will be published in conjunction with the show.
Details of the exhibition here.
August 20, 2016: One of my favourite Warhol films, Sunset, is going to be shown Wednesday through Sunday, August 19, 2016 - January 8, 2017, at The Menil Collection in Houston, Texas. A number of talks will take place after the screening on dates that are listed on the website. They include a talk on November 2, 2016 by curatorial assistant, Haley Berkman, on John and Dominique de Menils' relationship with Andy Warhol and the commission of Sunset.
Details of the film screenings and talks here.
August 19, 2016: I have added to the site a brief history of the performances of Jackie Curtis' play, Glamour Glory and Gold: The Life & Legend of Nola Noonan, Goddess and Star! The article gives details of the different productions of the play (and their reviews), and gives additional information about the liaison between Warhol star Sally Kirkland and Robert De Niro during the the play's second run, and the reason behind Jackie's onstage collapse. The article is here.
from City Weekend here
August 18, 2016: The exhibition "Andy Warhol: Contact" is currently at the M Woods Gallery in Beijing where it is running from August 6, 2016 to January 7, 2017. The gallery was a former munitions factory. The opening night party was attended by the ex-director of The Andy Warhol Museum, Eric Shiner, as pictured above.
Details of the exhibition here.
August 16, 2016:Tributes to John Vaccaro, who died on August 7 (see next page), have appeared in the press. His New York Times obituary is here. His Playbill obituary is here. Broadway World is here. Artforum here.
August 14, 2016: Artlyst is reporting that Professor Rainer Crone has died "after a long illness, age 73." Crone wrote extensively on the arts and taught at U.C. Berkeley, Columbia University, NYU and Yale. He also produced the first catalogue raisonné of Warhol's works for his Ph.D - a significant achievement for a young student in his mid-twenties, particularly given the lack of information about Warhol's working practices at the time.
The Artlyst article makes a number of claims about a self-portrait that Crone included in his cat. rais. which was later removed from post-Crone editions of the cat. rais.
In January 1970 Warhol and Crone discussed which painting should be used for the cover of the raisonné of his work. The artist suggested a Red Self-Portrait, which had been recently acquired by Warhol's most prominent European dealer and Interview magazine co-owner Bruno Bischofberger. It was signed, dated and dedicated to "Bruno B." Warhol provided an Ektrachrome [sic] of this work which was used for the cover of the 1970 raisonne and its 1972 revised edition, and 1976 edition which listed this Red Self Portrait as entry #169. The Andy Warhol Foundation later refused to authenticate this work as it was produced by someone else on Warhol's instructions... The case is still unresolved.
The Artlyst article refers to the "Red Self-Portrait" as if that is the title of the painting. It isn't. No. 169 in Crone's cat. rais. is simply referred to as "Self-portrait." The name "Red Self-Portrait" was inappropriately assigned to the work by Joe Simon-Whelan and used by the art critic Richard Dorment to give the impression that it was one of a series of red self-portraits produced by Warhol. But Warhol did not do a series of red self-portraits. He did a series of "Self-portraits," most of which did not have a red background. (See "Addendum: Richard Dorment and the New York Review of Books.")
The particular self-portrait referred to by Artlyst was later purchased by Anthony D'Offay in 1999 for $230,000.00. When that self-portrait was "denied" by the Authentication Board, Mr. D'Offay did not challenge the Board's decision. Artlyst is confusing the circumstances surrounding Mr. D'Offay's painting with one owned by Joe Simon-Whelan who claimed to own a work from the same series as the painting owned by D'Offay. Simon-Whelan brought a legal action against the Authentication Board after they denied authenticity of his self-portrait. His lawyers withdrew from the case after a number of depositions were taken in New York.
When Artlyst claims that the self-portrait included in Crone's cat. rais. was "produced by someone else on Warhol's instructions" they are referring to the work owned by D'Offay. But there is no documentary evidence to support the claim. No written instructions referring to the work by the artist have ever been found and the work was printed rather than painted. Although Warhol used silkscreening as a part of the artistic process, his paintings also involved hand painting of one form or another and the "denied" work was printed like a poster. This applies to both the D'Offay work and the one owned by Joe Simon-Whelan. Warhol's art assistant during the 1960s, Gerard Malanga, did not support the claim that the work owned by Simon-Whelan was authentic. (Mr. Simon-Whelan had previously submitted to the Board a work he claimed to be an original Warhol consisting of a canvas with real dollar bills attached to it. That work was also denied authenticity after the Board noticed that the Secretary of the Treasury whose signature was on the bills took office in September 1988 and Warhol died in 1987.) (See: "What Andy Warhol Didn't Do.")
In a sworn deposition relating to the Simon-Whelan case, Crone was ultimately unable to confirm that the Ektachrome of the work provided to the publisher was the work owned by D'Offay because Crone was not involved in the actual publishing of the cat rais. It was the publisher who received the Ektachrome, not Crone. Crone never saw how the cover of the cat. rais. was produced.
In addition to the first Warhol cat. rais., Crone also wrote the text for the exhibition catalogue, Andy Warhol: A Picture Show. But Warhol was only one of the many artists that Crone wrote about. His prolific and well-respected output included books and essays on a large number of artists including Malevich, Louise Bourgeois, Francesco Clemente, Anish Kapoor, Paul Klee, Rodin, Donald Judd and the filmmaker Stanley Kubrick.
Victor P. Corona
August 13, 2016: An article on sociologist, Victor P. Corona, has appeared in the Times (London). Corona has taught sociology at Columbia University and NYU and has hosted a myriad of panel discussions relating to the history of the New York underground and club scene. He is currently writing a book on New York's nightlife, past and present. Interviewees include Warhol stars Bibbe Hansen, Joe Dallesandro, Jane Forth and recently deceased Holly Woodlawn and Billy Name.
The article can be read here. (Readers of the Times in London are allowed two free articles.)
August 13, 2016: As most readers of this site will know, the Warhol scholar Patrick S. Smith, died earlier this year. His sisters, Sandra and Rita left a message on his Facebook page on May 8th saying that he had died but did not give the date of death. If you were a friend or relative of Patrick, can you please contact me? His contribution to Warhol scholarship was great and he deserves having his death honoured on the web with at least the date of his death. He was a regular correspondent and user of the site. You can contact me at: firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you.