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There are over 30 books about Andy Warhol. Jonathan Flatley’s will be the first that is truly comprehensive?there’s so much more to Warhol than the famous silk screens of Marilyn Monroe or the Campbell’s soup cans?and the first to reveal the internal logic of the artist’s life and his aesthetic activities, showing what binds them together, enabling us to see his art and life as a totality. Here’s a partial inventory of Warhol’s doings: movies (this includes Warhol’s affection for bad acting), his collecting (jewelry, Art Deco furniture, perfumes, conversation tapes [10,000 hours],snapshots [66,000], even scores of Polaroids of male genitals [visitors to his studio were asked to drop their pants for the camera]), and, in addition to the silk screens, the paintings, drawings, prints, sculptures, as well as novels and memoirs, there was even a monthly gossip magazine. For one two-year period, everyone who came to his studio (the Factory) was obliged to take a screen test, a collectivity of ?misfits misfitting together.” Warhol had an extraordinary talent for liking things. Flatley appropriates ?liking” as a central theme here, showing how Warhol helps us see likeness across differences. Liking/likeness can take the form of desire, of similarity, of commonality. For Warhol, liking is an activity, one that fuses feeling with thought and creates new forms of social affiliation, and in this wise is central to queer theory. Flatley sees in Warhol’s promiscuous liking a set of attempts to figure out how to emotionally engage the world in a context where, as he said, ?it would be so much easier not to care.” In practice, the celebrity silk screens show the process of making the same image over and over, but each time a little different, a way of collapsing distinctions between similitude and difference. Another example is Warhol’s life-long interest in drag, which Flatley shows dovetails with his interest in race (the ?Race Riot” series), and thus demonstrates liking across gender and race simultaneously. And so: Like Andy Warhol is the best full-length study of the artist?and no single artist today is more representative of postmodern culture than Warhol.
Number of Pages: 274
Genre: Art, Social Science
Publisher: Univ of Chicago Pr
Author: Jonathan Flatley
Street Date: November 24, 2017
Item Number (DPCI): 248-48-5129
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