KIL_Inspiration_The Warhol Look Q6.qxp:Inspiration
FASHION, GLAMOUR AND STYLE, THEN AND NOW. BY CALLY JAMIS VENNARE
More than two decades after his untimely death, Andy Warhol’s bold imprint on fashion remains strong and vibrant. Then and now, The Warhol Look reflects the artist’s distinct blend of fashion, glamour and style. And no matter how it’s framed—runway show, museum exhibition, window display, or magazine illustration— Warhol’s work has a uniquely timeless appeal. In the second half of the 20th century, The Warhol Look reigned supreme. The artist’s influence crossed genres, genders and generations as his work grew more expansive and popular. It was controversial. It was iconic, yet contemporary. And it constantly changed to reflect the times...just as Warhol had hoped. His diversity of styles (those he created through his art as well as embodied in appearance and demeanor) still offer limitless inspiration for today’s artisans. Pop Art has been “embraced and disseminated by the fashion industry,” says art historian Marco Livingstone. Warhol’s bold color palette,
DIGITAL IMAGE © THE MUSEUM OF MODERN ART/LICENSED BY SCALA / ART RESOURCE, NY
strongly influenced by his vast Fiestaware collection, is considered at the same time nostalgic and nouveau. And his glamorous subjects—Marilyn Monroe, Elizabeth Taylor and Edie Sedgwick to name but a few—still
fascinate and inspire designs on and off the runway. According to Alice Mackrell’s book Art and Fashion, designer Yves Saint Laurent considered his great friend Warhol to be “inspiring in everything he did.” For
Warhol Self Portrait, nine canvases 1966
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other top photographers and the woman who introduced Warhol to Mick Jagger), leggy Donyale Luna (the first African-American supermodel), icy Nico (a former model turned musician with ties to Bob Dylan, Brian Jones, and ultimately, The Velvet Underground), and Ivy Nicholson (a top cover girl of the early 1960s).
IMAGE © THE METROPOLITAN MUSEUM OF ART / ART RESOURCE, NY
Betsey Johnson and other accomplished designers, the Warhol Look was manifested in dresses made from paper, plastic and metal. Other prominent examples include Jean-Charles de Castelbajac’s vibrant dresses printed with Warhol motifs, Gianni Versace’s “Marilyn Monroe” dress and Philip Treacy’s limited edition collection of hats and bags featuring iconic Warhol images. And at spring 2011 New York Fashion Week, Diane von Furstenberg channeled her very own Andy Warhol portrait through blaring pink lips on the otherwise fresh faces of her runway models. “At some point in the creative process we pulled the picture,” noted von Furstenberg on stylelist.com. “I was young in the ’70s and all these clothes remind me of my youth.” Warhol’s influence reached further than fashion, to commercial and fine art, filmmaking, and publishing. In fact, his Interview magazine is considered by many to be the pinnacle of the artist’s obsession with style. “Interview was the first pop culture magazine,” says Paige Powell, its former associate publisher. “It set trends rather than followed them. It was in the moment, not dated.” Not surprisingly, Warhol’s passion for celebrity led to his creation of Interview. “He wanted to be part of the city in a bigger way…and felt if he had a film magazine, they would let him into the premieres. And they did!” Moreover, The Warhol Look (the catalog supporting the 1997 to 1999 exhibition of the same name) also established that “today’s merging of art and fashion is in large measure the legacy of Andy
GLAMOUR & FILM In 1965 Warhol made more than 10 films (and numerous public appearances) with Edie Sedgwick, the trendsetting tragic beauty who is still regarded as a fashion icon. The films include Beauty #2, Poor Little Rich Girl, Face, Lupe and Kitchen, among others.
Warhol” and that “fashion is the connective tissue joining what previously appeared as disparate elements” in his work. The Andy Warhol Museum, which organized the exhibition The Warhol Look, is one of the most comprehensive single-artist museums in the world. At the end of their 15th anniversary celebration, the museum’s former director, Tom Sokolowski, and archival staff provided the following examples to give us a deeper appreciation of Warhol’s expansive footprint.
TODAY’S MERGING OF ART AND FASHION IS IN LARGE MEASURE THE LEGACY OF ANDY WARHOL.
MODELS & MUSIC In the mid-1960s, Warhol featured many fashion models in his films. This was especially evident in his series of Screen Test portrait films that included blonde “Baby Jane” Holzer (a sought-after fashion model among David Bailey and
DESIGNERS & TELEVISION
After years of socializing with fashion designers such as Halston (whose cocktail dress of light, slinky fabric was printed with Warhol’s bold, bright 1965 Flowers image), in 1979 Warhol produced a multipart television series titled Fashion, which focused on the work of the top designers of the day. In later TV series in the mid1980s, Andy Warhol’s TV and Andy Warhol’s Fifteen Minutes, Warhol continued to present the work of (at the time) current designers such as Stephen Sprouse, who based an entire season’s line on Warhol’s Camouflage paintings. To learn more, visit The Warhol in downtown Pittsburgh, or go to www.warhol.org.
The Souper Dress, paper 1966-67
Fashion, Glamour and Style. Then and now. Appeared in Spring 2011 issue of FORUM Magazine.