There are just two days left to catch the large-scale Andy Warhol exhibition currently running in Beijing.
Along with Lichtenstein, Warhol is arguably the most renowned Pop Artist. In his lifetime he collaborated with countless celebrities, and artists including Jean-Michel Basquiat.
His images of celebrities – from Marilyn Monroe to David Bowie and Elizabeth Taylor – have become almost as reproduced as the image of da Vinci’s Mona Lisa (which of course, Warhol did his own version of).
Now, many of his best-known artworks are on display at The Bird’s Nest, previously the main stadium for the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. Since the Olympic Games the space has held a number of exhibitions, including one by Renaissance artist Michelangelo.
This exhibition demonstrates how Warhol explored the relationship between celebrity culture, advertising and artistic expression. In the late 1960s, Warhol made the prophetic statement that, “In the future, everyone will be world-famous for 15 minutes.” These connections are possibly more relevant now than ever in the age of social media.
The organiser said that this is the largest display of Warhol’s work in China, with the show spanning almost 40 years of his oeuvre. It includes his paintings, photographs, silkscreen prints, sculptures and films – featuring his most famous pieces, such as Marilyn Diptych, Brillo pad boxes and Banana Graphic.
Banana Graphic went on to become an internationally recognised symbol of Pop Art and featured on the cover of Velvet Underground & Nico’s debut album.
As well as his art, the exhibition also includes many of Warhol’s personal photographs, including a “selfie” of his first trip to China in 1982.
Since the Beijing Olympics, Han Jincao, general manager of the Beijing Bird’s Nest Culture Creative Co. Ltd, told CGTN, “We have rolled out a series of themed exhibitions featuring Classical Art as well as Pop Art. We also expect more such genres like Abstract Art can be introduced here.”
“I think the art exhibitions here have strengthened the stadium’s role as a comprehensive space. We have the creativity and resources to make it more diversified in the future,” Jincao continued.
The exhibition, organised by SYART and commissioned by the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, is on until 5 January.