Andy Warhol, artist, New York City

Andy Warhol (scars), artist, New York City, August 29, 1969
Gelatin silver print
9 7/8 × 7 15/16 in

Andy Warhol, artist, New York City, April 5, 1969
Gelatin silver print
13 13/16 × 10 15/16 in

Avedon’s photo portraits of Andy Warhol — one framing his face, another laying bare the scars on his torso — have a special place in the photographer’s corpus and the portraits we know of Warhol. The father of Pop Art reigned supreme over the New York underground in the late 1960s. He directed or produced a number of independent movies, screen tests and experimental feature films; formed the rock band The Velvet Underground & Nico; and elevated young artists destined for the street into stars in the Silver Factory studio.
On June 3, 1968, the radical feminist Valerie Solanas shot Warhol at point-blank range in the Factory. Warhol woke up after several days in a coma, and the stigmata from this attack, large scars, are depicted Christ-like in Avedon’s portrait. The Factory, a collective workshop built in response to the excessively-virile heroism of the earlier generation, was in turn toppled by the radicality of the avant-garde that followed.

This work was first presented by the Pinault Collection in the exhibition « Forever Sixties » at the Couvent des Jacobins in Rennes (2023).