The Significance of Campbell’s Soup Cans for Andy Warhol Essay

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Andy Warhol’s rise to fame was not easy. Haunted by his profession as a commercial artist in New York he struggled to gain recognition as a real artist, yet he kept trying. He experimented with different styles of art hoping to get a solo exhibition at a gallery. One of Warhol’s experimental styles was influenced by comic books; he made paintings that included characters from comics, along with though balloons. Warhol was greatly disappointed after seeing paintings of an artist by the name of Roy Lichtenstein, whose work resembled comic books as well. Fearing that his comic style paintings were inferior to those of Lichtenstein’s, Warhol moved on to another motif – painting consumer goods, specifically Campbell’s Soup cans. His original 32…show more content…
Although other artists were somewhat hostile towards the paintings five different art collectors were ready to purchase all the paintings from the series. Blum was against the idea of separating the collection; Warhol felt the same way as well, so Blum ended up buying all the paintings in the series himself. Albeit with some controversy, the paintings still made a great impact on the art world and finally earned Warhol the title of an artist. Each one of the 32 paintings in the series was identical in size, 20 x 16”. The image of the soup can spanned the entire height of the canvas in each painting, there was space, of about 4 inches, left between vertical sides of the canvas and each side of the can. They were all hand-painted, using synthetic polymer on primed canvas, “with the exception of the fleur-de-lis motifs along each label’s bottom edge (which were each individually printed, with varying degrees of completeness and clarity, via hand-made gum-rubber stamps)” (Bastian 43) as Kirk Varnedoe put it. The colour palette of the paintings closely resembled that of a real Campbell’s soup can, consisting of mostly red and black with a touch of silver and gold. The lettering on the can was made to

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