If you’ve ever wanted to dive into the world of pop art, the Andy Warhol Museum on Pittsburgh’s North Shore is the absolute best place to do it. More than 1,000 prints, 4,000 photographs, and 900 paintings in the collection help make it the largest museum in the United States dedicated to a single artist.
But there is so much more to this museum than just pop art: the seven floors of this museum display many other types of Warhol’s works you’ve likely never seen before, as well as rotating exhibits from other artists.
Although there are enough unique exhibits in this museum to keep us busy writing an incredibly detailed review, today we wanted to share some of our very favorites to give you a taste about what to expect when visiting!
Visit the Warhol Museum Starting from the Top Down
The best way to approach this museum is to start on the seventh floor and work your way down, as this progression will give you a chronological depiction of Warhol’s life and work.
On our most recent visit, we were struck by some of Warhol’s early work that we had never seen before- in particular, his shoe illustrations done using the blotted line technique. This technique was one Warhol started using while he was a student at Carnegie Institute of Technology and continued to develop when he moved to New York and through the 1950s. The broken, dotted lines and the watercolors he used to fill in the drawings give them a fragile, delicate touch that’s quite unique in the collection.
Create Your Own Screen Test to Appear in a Warhol Video
We also had fun with the Screen Tests exhibit where we had the chance to create our very own screen test (watch our completed screen test here!).
Warhol himself shot hundreds of screen tests between 1963 and 1966 of people who came to his New York studio. The subjects consisted of everyday people as well as famous artists like Salvador Dali. While Warhol’s screen tests were nothing more than the subject sitting motionless and looking at the camera, or even just performing day-to-day tasks while being filmed, we had a bit more fun with our screen test making faces and showing our personalities more overtly.
Play With the Interactive Silver Clouds
Another interactive exhibit is Silver Clouds, which is our favorite work in the museum. This piece takes up an entire room and has of dozens of helium-filled balloons that float around the room with the aid of a fan. You’re invited to gently interact with the balloons- just try not to feel like a kid again, I dare you!
Of course, if you’re looking for more classic Warhol works, the museum has those in abundance, too, like the larger than life Elvis 11 Times, Brillo boxes, and his Campbell’s soup cans to name a few.
Although Warhol’s work may not be for everyone, if you have an interest in learning more about one of the most prolific artist’s of his time, a visit to the Andy Warhol Museum is an absolute must.
The Andy Warhol Museum is located at 117 Sandusky Street in the North Side. Photography is prohibited inside the museum (although one day, if we ask nicely, maybe we’ll get permission to update this article with proper images). The Warhol Museum also hosts lectures, daily gallery talks, Good Fridays, and tons of other cool events worth checking out. Good Fridays happen every Friday from 5-10 pm, when admission is half-price and a cash bar is open in the lobby.
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