Tuesday, September 28, 2010

I Shot Andy Warhol Suite

More Pittsburgh stories. Well, story. Singular.

Since we were going to be in the Three Rivers area, I told my nephew it would not be just about the concert, and that he'd get a little culture too. We were going to the Andy Warhol Museum.

Denton and I went shortly after it opened 15 years ago. I think we were still living in Columbus, but it is kind of a blur.

We arrived on Sunday morning when it was supposed to open. Not that there was a crowd. We were the crowd. Hell, the doors were locked....they had to come and let us in.

The "guy" behind the desk was as affected as one might think. Too good to talk to us or acknowledge our presence. I hate fags like that. Yeah, I went there. His counterpart, who was dressed in Pittsburgh Pirates gear was the friendlier one. I'm sure the first one was annoyed there were "tourists" on site.

If you haven't been, like many museums now-a-days, you start on the top level and work your way down. It's a smallish place to begin with, so you don't get all museum-fatiguey. You know - bored after 90 minutes where you shift foot to foot until you can get the hell out of there?

There are a lot of pieces even the lesser art knower would know. Like Elvis.

No sign of my absolute favourite Warhol piece, Sixteen Jackies. But by now you know I've had a fascination of the JFK assassination since I read the Warren Commission in 6th grade. And I had post card versions of that series for years - I don't know what happened to them. I really liked them, as morbid as one might find them.

If you like pop art, you'd love the place.

Matt is almost 18 so the area that had a 'graphic sexual material' we thought it was ok to let him see. I'm sure he won't be telling his parents of the drawing of men's penises, fisting or labia that were on display. Ditto with video montages of of the drag queen-y guy sensually eating a banana. I consider it part of his education.

One room had some foam covered in parachute material. The foam was from the Factory and it was part of an instillation that was meant to be sat on....so I did. C'mon, when would I have a chance to be part of Warhol's art?

Relaxed, I am. I didn't know Warhol did a series of skull paintings.

...but there they were. A room full of skulls.

Self Portrait #1652. Lovin' the rolls of my neck. I'm sure it's just the angle. Right? RIGHT???

My half self-portrait. Look Ma - no fat neck rolls!!!! Now that is art!

We had a nice time there and I think Matt liked it. We headed to the gift shoppe on the way out and there was a guy there that looked eerily familiar to me. Actually a lot like Andrew Sullivan, but I'm sure it wasn't him since he didn't have that British accent. But I'm thinking maybe a blogger I have seen? I don't know.

The gift shoppe was actually cheesy. Kitchy I guess. I get it with the pop art thing, but it was crap you wouldn't buy anywhere else let alone with marked up prices. But I couldn't talk Matt into getting a Velvet Underground t-shirt. He likes them, but said his mother won't let him wear it to school.

I think he had a good time there, and at least he can say he saw some stuff. I think it was a nice ending to a busy weekend.

Song by: John Cale


Cubby said...

We experienced our first top-down museum a few weeks ago in DC (the American Indian museum). It's a smart plan to organize a museum that way.

It would be kind of cool if there is another blogger publishing a post this week about how he saw someone familiar at the Warhol museum. Have you looked?

Jonny said...

I love Warhol's vanitas paintings.

anne marie in philly said...

I have not been to the warhol museum...now THAT's a good excuse to visit PGH (besides the food, and Mister Rogers, and Heinz Ketchup)! thanks blobby!

PS - yes, it's just the angle!

Ur-spo said...

neat place
neat photos

snotty workers, particularly gay ones, remind me of the line from AbFab where Edina tells the shop girl, 'you work in a store you know, you can drop the attitude."