Andy Warhol

August 6,1928-February 22,1987

Artwork Done By Andy Warhol

Campbell's soup can 1965- Andy Warhol
Shot Blue Marilyn 1964- Andy Warhol
Flowers, C. 1964 (1 Purple, 1 Blue, 1 Pink, 1 Red)- Andy Warhol
A Set of Six Self-Portraits, c.1967- Andy Warhol


  • Occupation: Artist, Painter, Sculptor
  • Born: August 6, 1928 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
  • Died: February 22, 1987 in New York City, New York
  • Famous works: Campbell's Soup Cans, Moonwalk, Marilyn Monroe, Che, Eight Elvises
  • Style/Period: Pop Art, Modern Art

Where did Andy Warhol grow up?

Andy grew up in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania the son of a construction worker. His birth name was Andrew Warhola. When he was 8 years old he caught a liver disease that caused his limbs to sometimes spasm uncontrollably. While recovering his mother, an embroiderer and artist, taught him to draw. He was a quiet and shy child, but loved drawing, photography, and movies.

When Andy was fourteen, his father died from liver disease. His father considered Andy the brightest of his children and had saved money for Andy to go to college. When he graduated from high school, he went to Carnegie Mellon University to study art.

New York City

After graduating from college, Andy moved to New York in 1959 to make his name as an artist. Andy became a very successful commercial artist. On one of his first jobs his name in the credits was misspelled "Warhol" instead of "Warhola". Andy liked the name and decided to keep it.

Over the next ten years Andy did quite well working as a commercial artist. He won prizes for his work and was known for his unique style. However, Andy wanted to do more with his art. He wanted to do something new and different.

Pop Art

In 1961 Andy came up with the concept of using mass-produced commercial goods in his art. He called it Pop Art. He would use commercial images and reproduce them over and over. One early example of this was a series on Campbell's Soup cans. In one painting he had two hundred Campbell's soup cans repeated over and over. Andy often used silkscreen and lithography to create his pictures.

Famous People

Andy also used pictures of famous people. He would repeat the same portrait over and over, but use different colors and effects in each picture. Some of the celebrities he had as subjects include Marilyn Monroe, Che Guevara, Mao Zedong, and Elizabeth Taylor.


Andy soon became a very famous celebrity himself. He opened a new studio called "The Factory". He not only worked on his art there, but had large parties with wealthy and famous people. It became one of the cool places to be in New York City. Andy was also selling a lot of his art.


Andy was a different kind of artist. While many artists focused entirely on their art with no interest in personal fame or fortune, Andy wanted to be rich and famous. Some artists accused him of making art in order to make money. However, many of the images he created have become iconic in American culture. His paintings have grown in value as well. One of his portraits called Eight Elvises sold for $100 million in 2008.

Despite having made a lot of money off of his art, Andy can also be credited with bringing art to the masses. He would mass produce prints of his art so it was affordable to everyone.

Interesting Facts about Andy Warhol

  • His birth date was never recorded at a hospital. Andy liked to change his birthday and make up stories about his youth when doing interviews with the press.
  • He once said that "good business is the best art."
  • He was also interested in film and music. He produced around 60 films and supported a band called the Velvet Underground. One of his movies was a 6 hour film of his friend sleeping called Sleep.
  • Andy was shot three times in the chest by feminist Valerie Solanis and nearly died on June 3, 1968.
  • He died in the hospital after surgery on his gall bladder.
  • His parents were immigrants from Slovakia.


Warhol's art used many types of media including...

  • hand drawing
  • painting
  • printmaking
  • photography
  • silk screening
  • sculpture

Socio/Historical/Political Context of Art


Andy Warhol was influenced largely by urban society. He was also very influenced by famous trends/ fads and popular items and people of the time ( i.e. Campbell's soup and Marilyn Monroe).

Historical/ Political

Andy Warhol, within his images also captured the likeness of some of the most visionary and powerful political leaders of the 20th century. Images of John F. Kennedy, Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, Queen Elizabeth II, and Mao Zedong can all be found within his collection.Warhol's images of these powerful personalities comment on the interrelationships between politics and celebrity culture in the late twentieth century -- connections that remain ever present today.


Andy Warhol was largely influenced by the environment around him, and because of this it is hard to say what other artists may have influenced him. However, it is said that he was influenced partially by at least these three people.

  1. First and foremost, Andy was influenced by his mother Julia. Her creative talents were the main source of Andy's artistic genius.
  2. Secondly, Andy was influenced by Marcel Duchamp who inspired Andy's pop art.
  3. Finally, Andy was influenced by Picasso's style of cubism, which can be seen in many of Andy's artistic works.

Child-Centered Experiences

1. Print Making/ Pop Art Lesson- Flower Picture ( like seen above) by Andy Warhol

  • Step 1-Have students cut out multiple (at least 5) tissue paper flowers(Make sure you have the kind of tissue paper that 'bleeds'...test it if you're not sure by dropping some water onto it). Before cutting, show the students a couple of cutting methods like the 'fold in half to get symmetrical flowers' or just cut 4 triangles out of each side of a square for the simplest of flowers.
  • Step 2-Give each child a piece of 9x12" white paper (the thicker/heavier the better). Then use a spray bottle to wet the paper thoroughly.
  • Step 3- Next have the children lay their flowers on top of the damp paper,encourage overlapping(it's fun to watch colors blend together)!
  • Step 4- Let that sit for a few minutes (sounds like a recipe, right?) and then peeeeel those babies off.
  • Step 5- Let dry. Once dry add details/designs using crayons to enhance our artwork.

2. Pastel quadrant drawing/ pop art ( similar to Andy Warhol's picture of " A Set of Six Portraits seen above)

  • Step 1- Give each student a piece of white paper and have them fold it both hamburger and hot dog style to create four quadrants.
  • Step 2- Next, give the children their drawing prompt. For this art project the children will be drawing animals.
  • Step 3- Then, tell the children to pick an animal that they want to draw and have them make an outline of it throughout the four boxes ( an example of this can be seen in the finished product).
  • Step 4- Once the children are finished with their outline, tell the children that they are to color their picture using oil pastels. Before beginning coloring though, the children should first be told that each of the four quadrants should look different and should not include the same colors.

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