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Posts Tagged ‘Andy Warhol’

This post comes to us from Sarah Churchill , Curatorial Intern.

Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (1864-1901)

Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (1864-1901)

One of the perks of interning here at the New Britain Museum of American Art is access to the museum’s excellent programming, including last month’s symposium “Toulouse-Lautrec & His World Under the Microscope.”  Art historian Nancy Noble presented thought-provoking insights into the inhabitants of Lautrec’s world, while Rhea Higgins focused her attentions upon the many parallels between Lautrec and his contemporary Edgar Degas. Degas, aware of the so-called “parallels” famously said of Lautrec, “He wears my clothes but cuts them down to his size.” Ouch.

I was struck also by the comparison drawn by Noble between Lautrec and Andy Warhol. Both were printmakers and savvy, self-conscious marketers who worked tirelessly to elevate the genre of commercial art. Both suffered crippling disabilities and terrible isolation. This connection is probably the most poignant, for it was the experience of isolation that formed, not only the love of art in each of them, but also the sadness and longing that underscores their work. More fascinating still is their shared interest in the popular culture of their day. It would not at all seem strange to picture the two, side-by-side, holding court at Studio 54. Both Lautrec and Warhol blurred the line between life and art to the point that it can be tough to tell which is the reflection…

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Man Ray, 1974. Andy Warhol (1928-1987). Acrylic polymer and silkscreen on canvas, 14 ¼ x 11 in. New Britain Museum of American Art, Friends Purchase Fund, 1979.084.

Man Ray, 1974. Andy Warhol (1928-1987). Acrylic polymer and silkscreen on canvas, 14 ¼ x 11 in. New Britain Museum of American Art, Friends Purchase Fund, 1979.084.

The last three years in the global art market have seen massive changes. The overall leaders have completely changed, with China rising from third and fourth place in the last decade to first in 2010. Meanwhile, France seems to be in a downward spiral, hard-pressed for a solution to fix its market. Their history has been prosperous in the past, but the 20th century has been less than kind. American art is still a viable commodity within the global market, however, as can be seen by Andy Warhol’s “performance” in 2010.

The taste of an art audience varies year by year, and with the 1991 crash and recovery shifting the focus from what was popular towhat sells. Fast forward to 2007, and the dominance of Pablo Picasso (1881-1973) and Andy Warhol (1928-1987) on the art market, intermixed with a few Impressionist, as well as a massive Chinese influence-all of which helped to form the art world into a global economy that is approaching 10 billion dollars per year. Andy Warhol is at the forefront of these sales, with his revenue alone in 2010 being his all time high of $313, 535, 564. (more…)

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Chester Harding's Mrs. Samuel Appleton

Mrs. Samuel Appleton (Julia Webster). Chester Harding (1792-1866). Oil on canvas, 49 x 40 7/8 in. New Britain Museum of American Art, John Butler Talcott Foundation, 1972.91.

Are museums:

  1. 1. Places to preserve history,
  2. 2. Places to establish new history, or
  3. 3. Places to encourage creative growth?

Can there be a fourth choice- All of the above?

The New Britain Museum of American Art (NBMAA) is an interesting example that falls into the “All of the above” category. The facilities of the NBMAA include a variety of galleries that tell the story of Art History in America, while allowing contemporary artists to show us what tomorrow’s  textbooks might include. In addition, the museum has two spaces that allow for the artistic exploration and expression of children and adults alike.

On the first floor of the NBMAA’s gallery space, visitors can literally walk through the history of American art. The central hall features the Museum’s illustration collection, while rooms branching off allow the visitor to stroll through galleries highlighting Colonial Portraiture, the Hudson River School, 19th-20th Century Academic and Genre paintings, and American Impressionism. (more…)

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