Pen pals: Andy Warhol's personal letters find a new lease of life as art

Blurring the lines between art and commerce, Andy Warhol painted a portrait of America by celebrating iconic fixtures of American life. This film by Cadillac offers a rare glimpse into Warhol’s world..

It’s safe to say that Andy Warhol’s 15 minutes won’t expire any time soon. The latest evidence of the late artist’s omnipotence is a traveling exhibition titled 'Letters to Andy Warhol', centred on letters pulled from the artist’s extensive archive.

For the project, Cadillac and The Andy Warhol Museum commissioned an international group of creatives to produce new work inspired by Warhol. Reflecting the polymath artist’s prowess, the exhibition spans several mediums, from a star-packed short film by Chiara Clemente to a song composed by Warhol family friend Sean Lennon.

One of the standout works, is a large than life-sized children’s book inspired by a rejection letter Warhol received from MoMA. Referencing the artist’s early career as a fashion illustrator, the work was created by shoe designer Brian Atwood and Wallpaper* Italy editor-at-large JJ Martin. 'The whole idea was around creative redemption,' Martin explained. 'Even the most successful of us have all had terrible moments of rejection, of feeling stupid, unworthy and undesired.'

Turns out MoMA needed Warhol after all and the artist’s resilience – and ability to spin gold from the mundane – remains more prescient than ever. 'Warhol was the ultimate rebel and envelope pusher,' says Martin. 'I think he resounds so well with creative types because he was such a champion of creators and artists. He understood their needs. Warhol is still so modern today.  Can you imagine what he would have done on social media?'

Following its New York showing at Cadillac House, the exhibition will travel to Los Angeles in mid-January for display at the 101/Exhibit Gallery and then to Miami in early February before embarking on a global tour through early 2018.

New York at Cadillac’s exhibition space

Recently launched in New York at Cadillac's exhibition space, the exhibition 'Letters to Andy Warhol' explores the artist's personal correspondance

(Image credit: Shane Drummond)

A red Cadillac vehicles

A red 1959 Eldorado Biarritz is one of the heritage Cadillac vehicles on view as part of the show.

(Image credit: Shane Drummond)

A detail of Yves Saint Laurent’s haiku-like letter to Warhol

A detail of Yves Saint Laurent’s haiku-like letter to Warhol. Cadillac and The Andy Warhol Museum invited creatives to create artworks inspired by his personal letters

(Image credit: press)

Shoe designer Brian Atwood and Wallpaper

Shoe designer Brian Atwood and Wallpaper* editor-at-large JJ Martin teamed up on a larger-than-life children’s book inspired by a rejection letter Warhol received from MoMA.

(Image credit: Shane Drummond)

Derek Blasberg paid tribute to Warhol’s

Derek Blasberg paid tribute to Warhol’s use of Polaroid with his own selection of instant portraits

(Image credit: Matteo Prandoni)

INFORMATION
’Letters to Andy Warhol’ is on view at Cadillac House until 26 December. For more information, visit the Cadillac website (opens in new tab) and the Andy Warhol Museum website (opens in new tab)

ADDRESS

Cadillac House
330 Hudson St
New York, NY 10013

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