fine art

Andy Warhol's Attraction to Herbert Bayer's Lips

When Alexey Brodovitch was art directing Harper’s Bazaar, he ran a striking cover by Herbert Bayer for its 1940 “College Fashions” issue. A three-quarter view photo of a woman’s face is duplicated in two rows of four: a clear newsstand eye-catcher. Brodovitch went on to commission an up-and-coming illustrator named Andy Warhol for several...

Pop Art, Politics, and Critiques of Contemporary Culture

  Popular culture, capitalist critique, and female empowerment are among the topics of this, the last of a three-part feature on “Pop and Politics,” one of the programs at the 100th annual College Art Association conference in Los Angeles. Part one, my interview with Anthony E. Grudin about Andy Warhol and comic books, is...

The Pleasures, Politics, and Proto-Feminisms of Pop Art

In 1963, Betty Friedan’s The Feminine Mystique drew attention to the stifling state of American womanhood, and Roy Lichtenstein painted what might be considered a visual analogue: “Drowning Girl”, who’d rather be engulfed by tidal waves than call Brad for help. It was also the year Andy Warhol began his grungy, frightening Race Riot...

Politics of Pop: Warhol’s Working Class SuperHero

  Anthony E. Grudin cares about the working class. He also cares – a lot – about Andy Warhol. Not the later Warhol, who pandered to high society celebs, but the younger man, with one foot headed for the galleries and the other still hustling for commercial illustration gigs. Anthony, an assistant professor of...

4:02 PST. The L.A. Art Scene's Original Culture Jammers, part 2

This is the second half of my interview with Claudia Bohn-Spector and Sam Mellon, curators of Speaking in Tongues: Wallace Berman and Robert Heinecken, 1961 – 1976, a Pacific Standard Time exhibition currently at the Armory Center for the Arts. In part one we discussed Berman and Heinecken as designers, jokesters, and rear-guard revolutionaries....

4:01 PST. The L.A. Art Scene's Original Culture Jammers, part 1

Several decades before AdBusters, there was Wallace Berman and Robert Heinecken. Hardly anyone knew that these two media-manipulating L.A. hipster artists were intimates, beginning in the early 1960s. But now their relationship has been exposed to the public for the very first time. Naked women are also involved. A lot of naked women. And...