Pop Art of Andy Warhol
It’s been known as a pop-up guide for hipsters, but Andy Warhol’s Index (book) is much more than that: it is an artist’s book that turns the concept of an artist’s book inside-out with glamorous insouciance. It’s something of Warhol’s Factory—industrial in place of hand crafted, a commercial collaboration as opposed to a-work of a person artist. The high-contrast black-and-white photographs of Edie Sedgwick, Lou Reed, John Cale, and Nico exude seductive splendor. The typography is proto-punk.
Extra features elevate the guide in to the realm of experiential art: paper pop-ups of a can of Hunt’s tomato paste, a castle, a bi-plane, and a purple accordion that squeezes on an email once you turn the page. Also included, like treats in a box of Cracker Jacks, is a silver balloon and a couple of stamps with Warhol’s trademark (if you drop the panels into water his autograph disappears). However the ultimate place is a flexi-disc LP that's an audio meta-textural moment: Nico, Lou Reed, and John Cale speaking about a mock-up for the guide itself (three dummies were produced until a final version ended up being decided). A Velvet Underground track performs inside history. The book is a multi-dimensional and a multi-sensory experience.
The guide is drastically innovative in another way: it takes the typical singer meeting and subverts it with insouciance. Billy Name, who was responsible for the book’s manufacturing (Alan Rinzler brought the concept to Christopher Cerf randomly House, David Paul had been the fashion designer and Graphics International manufactured the pop-ups), had initially conceived of it as a literal list of Warhol’s movies. But once Random House demanded actual text, Billy Name hunted through data within Factory for interviews that could satisfy the needs.
He selected interviews which were “like Warhol Factory things (instead of nyc instances or Art in the usa stuff).” These are interviews that through Warhol’s evasiveness and cunning undermine objectives of the artist meeting. They're in stark contrast into interviews of the previous generation of musicians and artists, the Abstract Expressionists: the profundities of Mark Rothko (“The people who weep before my photos are receiving exactly the same spiritual knowledge I'd whenever I painted them”) or even the sincerity of Jackson Pollack (“Something in me personally knows in which I’m going, and—well, painting is a state of being. … painting is self-discovery. Every great artist paints exactly what he is”).
As an alternative, in an interview by Joseph Freeman, which will be imprinted inside guide, you receive this:
“Do you believe pop music art is…”
“do you would imagine pop music art is…”
“no … no we don’t.”
“why did you keep commercial art?”
“uuuhh, because I was making too much money at it.”
“Is your present work more satisfying?”
It’s very easy to dismiss Warhol to be silly here, equally men and women within the art globe initially dismissed the Campbell's soup cans to be trivial. But in exactly the same way that Warhol distorted the shiny banality of marketing imagery (look at smudgy graininess of a Campbell's soup can silkscreen) he had been in addition subverting the conventions of singer interviews.
Actually, in 1966 he upended a televised meeting with all the art critic Alan Solomon in a comically deadpan way. Perched on a director’s feces before an enormous silkscreen of Elvis, wearing his characteristic black leather jacket and dark colors, Warhol in the beginning shakily evades the condescending questions but gains self-confidence when he slyly shows that Solomon tell him what he desires to hear and he’ll just repeat the responses. Solomon interprets this as insecurity and will be offering to guide him through interview. Warhol transforms the tables on him. “You simply let me know the language and they’ll come out of my lips.” Solomon swivels forward and backward in the seat uncomfortably. “Let myself ask you to answer some questions and you can respond to, ” he says patronizingly. “Oh no, ” Warhol claims getting much more control, “you repeat the responses, also.” “But I don’t understand the responses!” replies Solomon, with hint of panic in the voice. He tries to look nonchalant however it’s too-late: their expert has been stripped away.
a meaningful meeting is a form of collaboration. Gay Talese, a journalist known for their meticulous in-depth reporting, features explained just how he becomes “a companion in their own personal knowledge of by themselves” together with his interviewees. Warhol actively resists these types of emotional probing. In another interview into the Index (guide), a German journalist poses the sort of earnest semi-academic questions you can imagine a critic from Art in the us asking. When he requires a convoluted concern how Warhol defines himself as a Pop musician he gets this answer: “It keeps myself busy.” Warhol evades self-revelation because effectively as their commercial imagery evaded the language of painterly representation.