Just when you think you’ve seen enough Warhol exhibitions to last a lifetime, along comes one that makes you remember why he remains one of the greatest artists of our time. “Andy Warhol: Prints from the Collections of Jordan D. Schnitzer and His Family Foundation” can be seen through September 3 at the High Museum of Art. The beautifully installed show, which originated at the Portland Art Museum, spans four decades and features more than 250 prints and ephemera in a range of techniques, from his first silkscreen prints, of Marilyn Monroe, to his darker images of the Birmingham civil rights protests and Electric Chair series. Warhol was a master of the multiple and of trifling ephemera, which in 2011 led to his foundation ceasing its authentication activities.
The installation includes a gallery hung with tinfoil wallpaper, here painted with graffiti by Atlanta artists, to resemble Warhol’s Factory. The entire “Mao” portfolio is displayed against wallpaper that Warhol designed for a show of monumental “Mao” paintings in 1974.
The exhibition has been dubbed the “largest exhibition of its kind” [emphasis added], which does not mean it’s the largest ever. Another survey of some 300 works, “15 Minutes Eternal,” was curated by the Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh and toured Asia in 2012-14.
In a press statement, Jordan D. Schnitzer said: “Artists, including Andy Warhol, push the envelope and force us to deal with the issues of the time. I think this Warhol exhibition will knock people’s socks off, with themes that are still relevant today.”
[All installation shots: John Paul Floyd, courtesy High Museum of Art].