Art & Popular Culture: The Warhol Effect Essay examples

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In the mid-20th century, there was a battle brewing in the art world. Commercialization began to mass-produce art in all varieties, from comic books to magazines, gift-wrapping, billboards, you name it! What a fantastic thing to be happening! Art was now widely available to the general public. However, with the creation of so many replicas’ what would define the value of art? Critic Clement Greenberg was the condemning voice of the fine art community, denouncing this movement for decades throughout the 1940’s and 50’s. His argument was that popular culture and mainstream art was simply an aesthetic photocopy, to take money from consumers and offer no further significance or meaning. He claimed it to be an empty, tasteless, western plague …show more content…
The silk screens that Andy Warhol was making, were almost untouched by human hands made almost completely using machines. While some people would even suggest to Warhol that he hand paint his works, that this might make them more acceptable in the high art culture, Warhol would refuse to do this, because he believed that only a machine could perfectly replicate his images. His works make a statement about the influence of machines in our everyday lives, how everything can be reproduced and mass produced with a silk screen, or a click of a button. Warhol used such every day, common images, that we cannot deny their presence in our lives. Warhol took the most basic of the human needs, for example, appetite for food and made a reproduction of a “Campbell’s Soup Can” to show us how even our simplest of human desires can be replicated by a machine. Warhol also did works that included many repeated images of the same can of soup, suggesting the art of the assembly line. This brings us to the question which Warhol asked himself, what marks the difference between art and “real objects”? The principle of Warhol’s art is that it is not an actual product that you see, but the image, the label and the packaging. Thus, by taking art productions that we see on everyday commodities, and putting that image on a canvas, Warhol made the link between low and high class art which expanded the pop-culture movement. Andy Warhol defined the art style of the 60’s, and paved the way for

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