Pop Artifacts

June 2023 View more

Summer Warhol exhibition hits DuPage

Andy Warhol’s ‘Marilyn’

There’s a lot more to Andy Warhol than soup-can paintings and vibrant Marilyn portraits. Take a deeper dive into this pop-art icon at the Warhol exhibition running June 3 through September 10 at the College of DuPage’s Cleve Carny Museum of Art in Glen Ellyn.

“Andy Warhol is probably the most-known American artist of the 20th century—part of that reason is that his work was so predictive in terms of how he worked and also how he understood culture and fame,” explains museum curator Justin Witte. “His Factory studio has served as a model for production that many artists today emulate and his understanding of the importance of his personal brand foreshadowed today’s social-media-focused culture.”

In those ways Warhol was very much ahead of the curve in the 1960s, ’70s, and ’80s. (He died in 1987 at the age of 58.) “Warhol’s work has recently gone through a reevaluation,” Witte says. “He was at the time dismissed as overly commercial. Today we are better able to see the important themes and content that runs through his work.”

The temporary 11,000-square-foot exhibition offers a glimpse into Warhol’s life through his works as well as interactive components, re-creations, and videos. The centerpiece is 94 original works from Andy Warhol Portfolios: A Life in Pop on loan from the Bank of America Collection. Also on display will be Andy Warhol Photographs: A Visual Diary, featuring 150 photographs from the Andy Warhol Photographic Legacy Project that highlight his working process and offers insight into his personal life. “Many of the photos on display visitors will recognize as sources for some of Andy’s most known works and projects, including ad campaigns he did for Absolut Vodka and Levi’s Jeans,” Witte says. “The range of works in the Bank of America collection beautifully highlight his development as an artist.”

Andy Warhol’s ‘Campbell’s Soup II: New England Clam Chowder’

There’s plenty more to peruse, with lots of new content created by the museum staff specifically for this exhibition. “We saw an opportunity to expand and to share more of Warhol’s life with our audience and have developed and produced other programming to surround that show.” This includes Andy Warhol: Silver Clouds (an installation of his interactive work consisting of large-scale silver balloons that float in the gallery space), displays of original 1970s and ’80s Interview magazines (Warhol founded the publication), a Studio 54 experience with video installations and fashion from the era, a Kids Pop Art factory for younger visitors, plus a Central Park–inspired outdoor space. There’s also a 3,000-square-foot display that tells Warhol’s story and follows his development as an artist. “This has over 83 photos form his life and work, commissioned contemporary artist works inspired by Warhol, and re-creations and artifacts from his life as well as original Warhol works from the College of DuPage Collection,” Witte says.

Even better, this Warhol celebration isn’t just limited to the museum. “DuPage County has embraced this event with its typical enthusiasm and creativity,” Witte says. “Over 22 communities in DuPage are planning Warhol-related events or installations.”

Events range from lectures and concerts to pop-art classes and DIY workshops. There’s even a Fifteen Minutes of Fame Fashion Show on June 24 hosted by the Lombard Historical Society and a 95th Birthday Bash on August 6 for Warhol at COD, complete with disco dancing and the chance to get a Polaroid taken with an Andy lookalike.

For more information on all the events, visit warhol2023.org.


Credit: Andy Warhol, Marilyn (1967) and Campbell’s Soup II: New England Clam Chowder (1969) © 2022 The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc./Licensed by Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. © 2022 The Estate of Marilyn Monroe LLC. Campbell Trademarks used with permission of Campbell Soup Company.