quarta-feira, 21 de maio de 2014


*Artigo de conclusão do curso "Warhol", ministrado pela Universidade de Edimburgo, Escócia, em parceria com o Tate Modern, Londres.

By Tamara Ramos
About this work of art:
Related subject: MONEY
The Dollar Sign: part of a serie produced in the 1980’s
Technique:  stamped twice with the Estate of Andy Warhol stamp synthetic polymer and silkscreen ink on canvas ,90 x 70 in. (229 x 178 cm.) Painted in 1981.
Currently on sale at Christie's for 3 million dollars.
The ideological message conveyed by visual information in each work of Andy Warhol is explicit and easy to grasp. The obsession with the mythical universe of celebrities, breaking sexual taboos, the reinterpretation of pictorial objects of our daily life, self-image tribute and repetition of ideas that fade in clear colors, are immediately captured in the work of Warhol. But the relationship that the artist established between art and money, leading a work of art to achieve market values ​​as high as objects of commercial market, is his greatest legacy.
More than  a simple  artist, Andy Warhol was a businessman with keen instincts. One of the most famous phrases said by Warhol reveals his fascination with the art as business: "Being good in business is the most fascinating kind of art. Making Money is art and work is art and good business is the best art".
Capitalism is capable of performing social inclusion mass, and no one understood this concept better than Andy Warhol.
Warhol’s thought was focused not on mere capitalist consumption, but which it represented symbolically. Big brands like Coca-Cola and Campbell Soup, both represented and made iconic by him, are symbols of an illusion that gives the idea of ​​equality between rich and poor. The mass consumption of commercial products allows for a sense of closeness between opposing social classes. Obsessed as it was by the unattainable world of glamor represented by Hollywood, Warhol liked to feel part of this environment through consumption of popular products: "What’s great about this country is America started the tradition where the richest consumers buy essentially the same things as the poorest. You can be watching TV and see Coca-Cola, and you can know that the President drinks Coke, Liz Taylor drinks Coke, and just think, you can drink Coke, too. A Coke is a Coke and no amount of money can get you a better Coke than the one the bum on the corner is drinking. All the Cokes are the same and all the Cokes are good".

200 Dollar Bills, one of his first masterpieces, due to the mass duplication of images allowed by silk-screening, ultimately became his calling card. The symbol of money was a constant in the career of Andy Warhol as One Million Dollar Bill (1950), Dollar Bill silkscreen (1960), and Dollar Signs series (1980). 
The simple image of the dollar eventually attracts more money.In November 2009, Warhol’s piece of artwork based on money was expected to auction at Sotheby’s for approximately $8 to $12 million. Instead, 200 One Dollar Bills sold for $43,762,500  to an anonymous buyer. Crunching the numbers, this comes out to a whopping $ 218.812 per screen printed dollar! 
This was only possible because Warhol did not see the money as bad as it was common to many artists before his time. To Andy Warhol, the money was just a symbol and our relationship with that image is that defines whether we are rich or poor. He noticed that Money itself was a piece of artwork, as an  illustrated piece of paper, and it was printed in a massive way. So, while everybody was carrying art in their pockets, he decided to put this image on the wall as a real work of art. 
The Nobel Prize in literature, the Peruvian writer Mario Vargas Llosa, in his book "The Civilization of the Spectacle" says: "For this new culture are essential to industrial mass production and commercial success. The distinction between price and value is deleted, both are now one and the first absorbed and canceled the second. It's good to have success and sold; bad that fails and not winning the public. The only value is commercial. The disappearance of the old culture implied the disappearance of the old culture of value. The only existing value is now determined by the market.” 
Llosa's essay, published in 2013, echoes the speech of Andy Warhol from the early '60s. Andy Warhol was the forerunner of the movement that validated the artwork bringing its commercial price. Thanks to Andy Warhol, Damien Hirst become a millionaire painting colorful pots without guilt.

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