What Memes Owe to Art History
The New York Times Magazine, Oct 1969, DeKOONING kelley MOTHERWELL warhol.
Condition: Minimal damage. with postal stamp and shipping label.
Signature: Not signed
Publisher: New York Times
Private Collection, NY
Obsessed with celebrity, consumer culture, and mechanical (re)production, Pop artist Andy Warhol created some of the most iconic images of the 20th century. As famous for his quips as for his art—he variously mused that “art is what you can get away with” and “everyone will be famous for 15 minutes”—Warhol drew widely from popular culture and everyday subject matter, creating works like his 32 Campbell's Soup Cans (1962), Brillo pad box sculptures, and portraits of Marilyn Monroe, using the medium of silk-screen printmaking to achieve his characteristic hard edges and flat areas of color. Known for his cultivation of celebrity, Factory studio (a radical social and creative melting pot), and avant-garde films like Chelsea Girls (1966), Warhol was also a mentor to artists like Keith Haring and Jean-Michel Basquiat. His Pop sensibility is now standard practice, taken up by major contemporary artists Richard Prince, Takashi Murakami, and Jeff Koons, among countless others.
American, 1928-1987, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, based in New York, New York
What Memes Owe to Art History
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Alongside Jackson Pollock, Mark Rothko, and Willem de Kooning, Robert Motherwell is considered one of the great American Abstract Expressionist painters. His esteemed intellect not only undergirded his gorgeous, expressive paintings—frequently featuring bold black shapes against fields of color—but also made Motherwell one of the leading writers, theorists, and advocates of the New York School. He forged close friendships with the European Surrealists and other intellectuals over his interests in poetry and philosophy, and as such served as a vital link between the pre-war avant-garde in Europe and its post-war counterpart in New York, establishing automatism and psychoanalysis as central concerns of American abstraction. "It's not that the creative act and the critical act are simultaneous," Motherwell said. "It's more like you blurt something out and then analyze it.
American, 1915-1991, Aberdeen, Washington, based in New York and Greenwich, Connecticut
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Since the beginning of his career, Ellsworth Kelly's emphasis on pure form and color and his impulse to suppress gesture in favor of creating spatial unity have played a pivotal role in the development of abstract art in America. A major influence on Pop Art, Minimalism, hard-edge and color field painting, Ellsworth Kelly’s best-known works are distinguished by sharply delineated shapes flatly painted in vivid color, such as Colors for a Large Wall (1951). His abstract paintings are inspired by the interplay of light, space, and color in the architecture around him. In contrast, Kelly’s automatic drawings feature delicate outlines of bodies and flora.
American, 1923-2015, Newburgh, New York, based in New York, New York
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