The Tate presents Andy Warhol’s series forgotten in the warehouse

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Andy Warhol's Ladies and Gentlemen

The exhibition shows how Warhol got involved in a struggle that continues to this day. This is the first retrospective of Andy Warhol in London in 20 years, bringing together 100 works of pop art icon. There are such hits as:

  • Green Bottles of Coca-Cola (1962);
  • Marilyn (1962);
  • Screen Tests (1964-1966);
  • Sixty Last Suppers (1986) – a huge (10 m wide) reproduction and reprinted 60 times on one surface of the original by Leonardo.
The Tate presents Andy Warhol's series forgotten in the warehouse
Press View of Andy Warhol Exhibition, Tate Modern, 2020.
The Tate presents Andy Warhol's series forgotten in the warehouse
Press View of Andy Warhol Exhibition, Tate Modern, 2020.

Ladies and Gentlemen

The history of the series Ladies and Gentlemen, exhibited for the first time in the last 30 years, is interesting.

In 1974, the Italian art dealer Luciano Anselmo commissioned the artist to portrait funny looking transvestites in women’s clothing. Warhol asked his friend, journalist, and photographer Bob Colachello to find suitable models for him. Bob found them in New York’s Gilded Grape nightclub in Times Square. Warhol shot portraits on Polaroid and transformed it into silk-screen printing with acrylics.

After the exhibition in Ferrara in 1975, this series was forgotten. According to Gregor Muir, curator of the exhibition at Tate Modern, they found it in a warehouse in New York and even managed to identify the models. They were black and Hispanic transvestites and transgender women.

Among them, in particular, there was the theatrical actress Wilhelmina Ross and Marsha P. Johnson, an active participant in the so-called Stonewall Uprising in New York. It was a series of riots and demonstrations against police raids on nightclubs in 1969. Rebecca Moser, the curator of the Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh, says that 40 years after the creation of the series, its characters can now be recognized as the first fighters for race equality, a struggle that continues today.

The exhibition will run until September 6. Recall that in the spring, Tate launched a virtual tour of the Warhol exhibition. Thanks to this, everyone could see the exposition on the gallery’s website.

 

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