Museum Announces Gift of 10 Warhols to Its Collection
On View June 12 through September 13, 2015
Columbia, S.C. – The Columbia Museum of Art announces its exciting summer exhibition, From Marilyn to Mao: Andy Warhol’s Famous Faces, on view June 12 through September 13, 2015. The exhibition is a thematically-focused look at the artist’s influential silkscreens and his interest in portraits. Andy Warhol (1928-1987) is central to the pop art movement and one of the best-known 20th-century American artists. From Marilyn to Mao uses 55 of Warhol’s famous portraits to explore pop art’s tenet of the cult of celebrity, the idea that pop culture adores the famous simply because they are famous. Warhol exploited society’s collective obsession with fame like no artist before or after him. The exhibition celebrates the Mao suite, an anonymous gift to the CMA of the complete set of 10 silkscreens Warhol created in 1972 of Mao Zedong, chairman of the Communist Party of China (1949-1976).
“The CMA is very grateful for the generous gift of Warhol’s complete Mao suite to our collection by an anonymous donor,” says CMA Executive Director Karen Brosius. “In honor of the gift, we organized From Marilyn to Mao with this significant acquisition of 10 Maos as the centerpiece. The gift strengthens the museum’s growing collection and its concentration on modern and contemporary art. Our deep thanks to The Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh, Penn. and to Bank of America for being major lenders to this exhibition and to BlueCross BlueShield of SC for their presenting sponsorship which is essential to sharing this remarkable selection of Warhol’s work with the Midlands.”
Warhol first gained success as a commercial illustrator before becoming a world-renowned artist. His works explore the relationship between artistic expression, celebrity culture, and advertisement that flourished by the 1960s–concepts he continued to examine throughout his career. His art forms a mirror of the rise of commercialism and the cult of personality. He was not a judge of his subjects as much as a talented impresario who brought thousands of people into the pantheon of fame, if only for fifteen minutes. Some, such as Marilyn Monroe, got a few more minutes.
“Andy Warhol defines American popular culture like no other visual artist,” says CMA Chief Curator Will South. “Warhol’s subjects were taken right off the supermarket shelf–everyone knows his Campbell’s Soup cans. His subjects were also taken off the silver screen–he was obsessed with the famous and the idea of fame itself. Today, nearly four decades after his death, the art world is still obsessed with Warhol. His art demands the highest prices in the art market, while exhibitions of his work draw fans that were not even born when he was alive. Warhol’s central position begs an all important question: did he really love consumer goods and celebrities and find them all beautiful, or was his life’s work a critique of American materialism? From Marilyn to Mao: Andy Warhol’s Famous Faces is a major exhibition focused on the artist’s celebrity subjects, and it is a great opportunity to think about (or rethink) what Warhol and his art mean in a world that arguably remains every bit as enthralled with pop culture as Andy was.”
In addition to Marilyn Monroe and Mao Zedong, the exhibition includes the faces of Judy Garland, Muhammad Ali, Sigmund Freud, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Albert Einstein, Annie Oakley, Theodore Roosevelt, Giorgio Armani, and Superman, as well as two self-portraits by Warhol, to name a few. The majority of the works outside of the CMA’s Mao suite are loaned by the Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh, Penn. The CMA has also secured a partnership loan with Bank of America to borrow seven pieces from their collection.
The run of the exhibition is filled with an array of related evening and daytime programs for adults and families.
The CMA also received a generous $25,000 Community Engagement Grant in support of the Warhol exhibition and related programming from the Central Carolina Community Foundation (CCCF). From Marilyn to Mao presents a unique opportunity for the community to engage in conversation and connect through a variety of interactive programs and experiences. The CMA has a longstanding partnership with the CCCF as both seek to improve the quality of life for Midlands residents and create a welcoming community.”
In addition to the Presenting Sponsorship of BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina this exhibition is presented through the generosity of Gold Sponsors: Bank of America and U.S. Trust; Silver Sponsors: Columbia Marriott and Marcia and Allen Montgomery; Bronze Sponsors: Adams and Reese LLP, Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough LLP, Dr. and Mrs. Benjamin M. Gimarc, and Susan Thorpe and John Baynes; Friends of Warhol Sponsors: Ms. Cheryl R. Holland and Mr. P. Douglas Quackenbush and Carol Saunders; Adopt-A-Famous Face Sponsor: AgFrist Farm Credit Bank; Supporting Sponsors: Tony and Sheila DiCioccio, Dr. and Mrs. W. John Bayard, Barbara and Roger Blau, Dr. and Mrs. Alan H. Brill, M.D., Robert L. and Mary Lou Burr, and Kirkland and James Smith; and a generous grant from Central Carolina Community Foundation.
“BlueCross is pleased to be the presenting sponsor of From Marilyn to Mao: Andy Warhol’s Famous Faces,” says David Pankau, president and CEO of BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina. “We believe the arts are an essential part of a healthy and thriving community. Through our support of the Columbia Museum of Art, BlueCross helps foster inspiration and creativity in the region and is another way to let visitors know South Carolina has much to offer. ”
Related Exhibition and Programs:
On view in the Caroline Guignard Community Gallery Tuesday, August 11 through Sunday, September 27
Drawing inspiration from Warhol’s Interview magazine, this community gallery exhibition allows for a dialogue between established and burgeoning artists in Columbia’s art scene. Each established artist has chosen promising new talents to collaborate on a piece that explores the concept of identity, further examining issues touched on in From Marilyn to Mao: Andy Warhol’s Famous Faces. Free.
Book a Tour and Save on Admission
Gather your friends and make a reservation to enjoy a docent-led or self-guided tour of the exhibition and save on admission. Hungry? Choose the tour with a lunch option or enjoy wine and cheese after your tour. Details at columbiamuseum.org.
School group visits include an in-depth guided tour of From Marilyn to Mao: Andy Warhol’s Famous Faces and a hands-on art project that connects to language arts, social studies, and key areas of the core curriculum. For more information contact CMA Education Manager Kayleigh Vaughn at 803-343-2163 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Art Explorer Backpacks and Gallery Guides
Art Explorer Backpacks are designed to encourage families to have fun in the galleries with interactive activities. Each backpack includes a sketchbook with colored pencils, a pair of binoculars, a compass, and hands-on activities that relate to the theme of the backpack chosen. Themes include: pattern, color, shape, and the current exhibition. Ask for one at the visitor services desk.
Gallery guides are your source to family fun. Guides include insider information about some of the works and a gallery hunt to discover shapes, patterns, and more. Available for free in the CMA lobby.
Gallery Tour: From Marilyn to Mao: Andy Warhol’s Famous Faces
Every Saturday | 1:00 p.m.
A guided tour provides an overview of the thematically-focused exhibition, From Marilyn to Mao: Andy Warhol’s Famous Faces, featuring 55 of Warhol’s famous portraits to explore pop art’s tenet of the cult of celebrity, the idea that pop culture adores the famous simply because they are famous. Free with membership or admission.
Related Summer Camps
Of the many camps offered this summer, these are inspired by the exhibitions.
Ages 4 – 7: $135 / $108 for Dual/Family Members and above
Ages 8 – 12: $160 / $128 for Dual/Family Members and above
Ages 13 – 18: $190 / $152 for Dual/Family Members and above
Gladys Goes Pop
June 15 – 19 | 9:00 a.m. – Noon | Ages 4 – 7
That’s Pop Art of course! Travel through From Marilyn to Mao: Andy Warhol’s Famous Faces with Gladys the grasshopper for inspiration. In the studio, create your own fabulously popular artwork.
Project Runway: MOD Edition
July 13 – 17 and July 27 – 31| 9:00 a.m. – Noon | Ages 8 – 12
Design and create your own look inspired by Andy Warhol’s Famous MOD style. The final day of camp features a fashion show with the CMA galleries as your runway!
July 13 – 17 | 1:00 – 4:00p.m. | Ages 8 – 12
Join us in exploring the exhibition From Marilyn to Mao: Andy Warhol’s Famous Faces and learn to create screen prints just as the artist did. Learn the process of silkscreen from start to finish.
Printmaking 101: Warhol Edition
July 27 – 31| 1:00 – 4:00 p.m. | Ages 13 – 18
Experiment with traditional and alternative printmaking techniques including silkscreen. View original prints in the CMA’s exhibition From Marilyn to Mao: Andy Warhol’s Famous Face’s and then take that inspiration straight to the studios.
Why Pop Art Keeps Popping: Andy Warhol’s Relentless Relevance
Friday, June 12 | Noon
Judging from the ever-rising price of his art and throngs who attend his shows, Andy Warhol remains one of the most popular artists in the world. Why? In his own words, CMA Chief Curator Will South’s lecture will not answer that question completely, but will have a good time trying. Free with membership or admission.
Passport to Art: Your Famous Face
Sunday, June 14 | Noon – 3:00 p.m.
Come get your Passport to Art and create your very own famous face before viewing the From Marilyn to Mao: Andy Warhol’s Famous Faces exhibition. This free drop-in studio program for families features a new hands-on art project each month. After spending time in our open studios, explore our galleries at your own leisure or join us for the family tour at 1:00 p.m. Free.
Art Break: Brad Collins
Tuesday, June 16 | Café 10:30 a.m. | Program 11:00 a.m. – Noon
ArtBreak is a program that looks at art through a different lens. Each session features a speaker who gives insight into their worldview by sharing their interpretation of works of art at the CMA. This month, begin the morning at the museum with pastries and coffee sold at a pop-up café by Drip before Brad Collins, professor of art history at USC, discusses Warhol and how he was a product of, and influence in, his time. Free with membership or admission.
Psychedelic Summer Solstice Tour and Tasting
Sunday, June 21 | 6:00 p.m.
Tune in, turn on, drink wine with Andy Warhol on the longest day of the year. “Be a standing cinema” while enjoying summer wines hosted by Doug Aylard of Vino Garage and experience the From Marilyn to Mao: Andy Warhol’s Famous Faces exhibition during a private tour. Judy Garland, Muhammad Ali, Superman, and all your other friends are going be there eating hors d’oeuvres in the cool, day-glo atmosphere of the museum and they want you to come be a superstar (for more than 15 minutes). $65 / $55 for members.
Gladys’ Gang: America Goes Pop Art
Wednesday, July 1 | 10:00 – 11:00 a.m.
Join us for this popular series! Gladys’ Gang is a free, early childhood arts and literacy program for ages 2-5 that focuses on preparing children for kindergarten. Using art as a guide, children and their adult caregivers enjoy story time in the galleries followed by a hands-on art project in the CMA studios. The program is held the first Wednesday of each month from 10:00 until 11:00 a.m. This month, visit the From Marilyn to Mao: Andy Warhol’s Famous Faces exhibition and re-create the American flag in your own pop art style. Registration required as space is limited. Free.
Pop Art Lecture with USC Professor Dr. Brad Collins
Friday, July 31 | Noon
Dr. Brad Collins, an art history professor at USC, discusses Warhol and his place in time–both in a historical and art historical context. While Warhol revolutionized the art world in the 60s, he continued to shape the cultural landscape into the 70s and 80s, as many of the works in this exhibition attest. Free with membership or admission.
Gladys’ Gang: Gladys Meets Warhol
Wednesday, August 5 | 10:00 – 11:00 a.m.
Join us for this popular series! Gladys’ Gang is a free, early childhood arts and literacy program for ages 2-5 that focuses on preparing children for kindergarten. Using art as a guide, children and their adult caregivers enjoy story time in the galleries followed by a hands-on art project in the CMA studios. The program is held the first Wednesday of each month from 10:00 until 11:00 a.m. This month, visit the From Marilyn to Mao: Andy Warhol’s Famous Faces exhibition and create a Warhol-inspired piece of art. Registration required as space is limited. Free.
Screen Printing 101
Thursdays, August 6 – 27 | 6:00 – 8:30 p.m.
From burning a screen to pulling the prints, learn all the basics of screen printing. In this four-week introductory class, students create, expose, and print their own designs. All materials included. This class is for students age 16 and over. 15 student maximum. $250 / $200 for members.
Arts & Draughts
Friday, August 14 | 7:00 – 11:00 p.m.
Arts & Draughts features craft beer, live music, and highlights the From Marilyn to Mao: Andy Warhol’s Famous Faces exhibition. Some of these include a silk screening station with USC’s Ink and Paper club with projects inspired by Warhol, art activities that allow visitors to create and share their 15 minutes of fame, a Unique Perspectives tour with Ed Madden, Director of Women and Gender Studies at USC, about the meaning of identity, guided tours of the Warhol exhibition, and an interactive photo booth made to look like Warhol’s factory. Sponsored by The Whig, WXRY, and Free Times. $9 / $5 for members / join or renew your membership that night and get in for free. To volunteer, visit http://vols.pt/xTfv89.
ArtBreak: From Warhol to Gaga
Tuesday August 18 | Café 10:30 a.m. | Program 11:00 a.m. – Noon
Dr. Mathieu Deflem, USC professor of sociology, discusses the ideas of celebrity and fame and how they have shaped the modern world. He begins with Warhol and traces these ideas to the present, focusing in particular on Lady Gaga and what these ideas mean in today’s world from a sociological standpoint. Free with membership or admission.
Dinner in White
Sunday, September 13 | 7:00 – 10:00 p.m.
Chef Ryan Whittaker is bringing a French tradition back to Columbia. Based on the incredible “Diner en Blanc” events that have popped up in cities around the globe, 116 Espresso and Wine Bar is excited to present their own “Dinner in White” here at the CMA. This evening of glitz and glamour is a pop-up restaurant inspired by pop art. The museum transforms into Warhol’s factory for a totally unique dining experience. 116 provides a gourmet meal featuring local ingredients, great wine, and live entertainment. Guests supply their own plate and, of course, wear all white. And, yes, you have our permission to wear white after Labor Day. A large portion of the proceeds go toward supporting the CMA educational mission. $120 / $100 for members.