Printed in 1985, Paramount (F. & S. II.352) is a colourful screen print by Andy Warhol that captures the well-known logo of the American film studio, Paramount Pictures. Warhol depicts the logo’s iconic mountaintop, rendered in white against a tricoloured backdrop of pink, red and blue. The circular logo in the middle of the print is surrounded by an arch of stars in yellow and green. These vivid and unlikely colours contrast with the print’s white background.
While Warhol has previously used the screen print technique to flatten colour and form, such as in his Flowers series, in this print, Warhol’s use of colour and gestural lines works to vivify the mountain and its surrounding text. The production company’s name, Paramount, stands out, which reflects Warhol’s keen interest in American popular culture and mass media production.
Paramount (F. & S. II.352) is part of the Ads series, produced by Warhol two years before his death. This series, composed of ten prints, drew on popular advertising campaigns and logos from contemporary American culture. Paramount (F. & S. II.352) draws attention to the commercial nature of American society, something that clearly fascinated and inspired many of Warhol’s prints. Printed on Lenox Museum Board, this image demonstrates how Warhol was able to elevate popular culture into the realm of high art, thus blurring the boundaries between low or mass culture and high culture.