WARHOL: MAKING HIS WAY THROUGH COLOUR COPIES

 

 

 

Warhol was an outsider. An artist of Czech origin that moved to the United States who knew how to take advantage of the kindness and badness of the social and economic system that welcomed him. From his beginnings as a graphic designer in New York, this misplaced creator was able to make a critical reading of the environment to produce the pieces that have made out of his work an iconic reference of contemporary art.

 

 

 

Andy Warhol. “Brillo Box”, 19664-1968. Museo colleção Berardo, Lisboa. © 2017 The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc. / VEGAP

 

 

 

The modernity of his proposals, if the term is considered appropriate, was misunderstood at the beginning. The fame of this artist was built up with perseverance and obstinacy. Following a pattern faithful to his ideas and a colourful spirit but not innocuous, Warhol was able to overcome the setbacks of the market to stand up his own visual identity.

 

 

 

Andy Warhol. Cows on painted paper, 1966. Collection of the Andy Warhol Museum, Pittsburgh. © 2017 The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc. / VEGAP

 

 

 

This exhibition highlights one of the essential aspects of his creative process, so related to graphic art. The possibilities of unlimited reproduction of his works, an aspect that reflects the American mentality of the super production based on the assembly line, clashes with the personalisations that Warhol made and with the own characteristics of this process, in which there are never two pieces absolutely identical. The density of the inks, the imperfections of the support, the wear of the plates... make the pieces, even conceived to be reproduced in mass, never be identical.

 

 

 

Andy Warhol. “Kétchup Heinz Box”, 1964. Collection of the Andy Warhol Museum, Pittsburgh. © 2017 The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc. / VEGAP

 

 

 

The exhibition traces the career of this artist up to his death, who faced the last creative years with a turn to the business world, another aspect that reflected the impact of the American idiosyncrasy in his career choices. After an assassination attempt in 1968, Warhol becomes a character in himself, a creator who made of his own image an iconic element at an international scale.

 

The CEART opens this Thursday, November 14th in the room A an exhibition dedicated to this master of photography, which will be open to the public until February 9th. The show includes one of the artist's latest projects, focused on the hard work carried out by the miners of Serra Pelada, an open gold mine in the heart of Brazil where employees daily risked their lives.

Immigration, poverty, marginal life, slave labour, man's relationship with the land, the use of natural resources... are issues that have always fascinated Salgado. From the beginning of his career as a photographer, his work has opted to give visibility to the most disadvantaged groups and to create with his images a vivid and impressive visual story without fakes. With a raw black and white, this author's work transits between photo-reportage and naturalistic photography.

And the idea that permeates all his work is human dignity. Salgado portrays employees, miners and gatherers from a purely humanistic approach that wants to value their integrity, their strength and their resilience.

“If you photograph a human, so that he is not represented in a noble way, there is no reason to take the picture. That is my way of seeing things.”

Salgado entered this discipline long after completing his studies in economics between Brazil and the United States, and a doctorate in statistics in France. But in 1973 his life took a turn, and he decided to start his career as a photographer. He achieved to work at the Gamma Agency and Magnum Photos for more than 15 years until in 1994 he founded his own agency “Amazonas Imagen”.

With the “Gold” project, the photographer portrays a harsh reality that takes place in the Serra Pelada mine, a name given to a totally devastated and anarchically excavated mining enclave, the world's largest open-pit gold mine, through which more than 50,000 people have passed. In the heat of the legends about the mysterious “El Dorado”, the enthusiasm for this precious metal led to the development of strenuous exploitation practices for the workers and to originate tales of grief and glory, of human victory and defeat between the soil, the tunnels and the cargo baskets.

The CEART exhibition brings together Salgado's full portfolio in his characteristical black and white and large-format photographs that leave no one indifferent.