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H 81cm x W 101cm
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Rats And Star is a signed screen print in colours on Lenox Museum Board made by one of the leading artists of the 20th century, Andy Warhol, in 1983. The print shows the members of the Japanese band, The Chanels, who specialised in doo-wop influenced music. The print captures the essence of Warhol’s visual style, characterised by his use of bright and bold, clashing colours and crayon-like gestural lines.
The print was commissioned by the band to use as an album cover and was made by Warhol while the band was in the midst of a legal scandal over the use of their band name. The French fashion brand, Chanel, put pressure on the band to change their name and the band eventually decided to call themselves ‘Rats and Star’, playing on the fact that Rats is a palindrome for Star. The band name also referenced the rags to riches story of the band members as ‘rats’ was a term used to describe the poor living conditions of the less affluent areas of Tokyo that the band started out living in.
Rats And Star reflects Warhol’s love of popular culture and fascination with stardom and the cult of celebrity. Warhol could identify with the band’s journey to stardom as the artist himself was the son of working-class immigrants and moved to New York with little money.