I remember visiting my first art gallery in the mid 1980’s and seeing a print by Andy Warhol in person.
As evidenced by my writing about the event nearly 35 years later, it left a lasting impression in my mind.
Maybe today if Warhol miraculously rose from the grave he wouldn’t get a second look except by some people who would be asking him when he was going to release a print so they could flip it and make some money off his back.
It must be tough being a real artist. I write of the artist who actually comes up with something people would want to hang in their homes for a long time. The sanctuary we call home…the place where children are created, raised and where we love and share our lives with those we love and hold dear to us.
Writing from my home I sit in my kitchen where a very special portrait hangs looking over the heart of our home. The place where people gather and share fine wine and nibbles and listen to jazz.
You see, I have a portrait of the current President of the United States hanging in my kitchen. Why the kitchen? Well if I told you it matched the lovely Farrow & Ball colours I would not be lying. The painting depicts number 45 in full military dress - very funny.
I affectionately call it ‘if you can’t stand the heat…’
But it is interesting that recently someone visited my home and I had to defend my right to hang the portrait in my home.
Were they equally offended by the Black or Red Lenin or the Mao by Andy Warhol? In fact they didn’t even stop to look at them hanging in the hall… have those portraits become so much a part of culture they have become almost like wallpaper? I think Andy Warhol would have loved that notion.
Of course I am no longer on their VIP list!
So the other day I was out running and the thought hit me after receiving an email from a friend of mine who represents the artist Tyler Shields.
You may remember Tyler Shields was the photographer from the US who snapped the infamous photograph of a comedienne holding the severed and bloody head of Number 45? Not a very nice thing to do.
I then realised that hanging in my dining room is a gigantic very special photograph created for us by the very same Tyler Shields. It depicts a woman wearing a kind of rubber bunny mask with big bunny ears smoking a cigarette.
Warhol put it best…
If you want to know all about Andy Warhol, just look at the surface: of my paintings and films and me, and there I am. There's nothing behind it.”
I see the art. I get the art. Shame some people just don’t get it.