ANDY WARHOL "IN THE BOTTOM OF MY GARDEN", 1956
Andy Warhol is arguably the most important American artist of the 20th century. In the 1950s, he was an in-demand and celebrated illustrator working for New York's toniest publications (like Harper's Bazaar) and elegant shops (such as Bonwit Teller) in addition to many smaller independent fashion companies.
Throughout the decade, Warhol received numerous awards and accolades for his illustrations - yet he found it difficult to surpass the designation of “commercial artist”. It wasn’t until the mid-1950s when Warhol completed a successful campaign for shoe retailer Miller & Sons, that he was finally granted widespread recognition for his renderings.
"In the Bottom of My Garden" is a delightful paradigm from this era. Serving as the cover for his book by the same name, Warhol lends his signature aesthetic to realize an ethereal wonderland of fairies, cherubs, and abundant florals. The book was composed with 16 unbound lithographs with a small number of hand-colored prints.
Warhol was keen on bookmaking during this time, publishing a handful of elegant and whimsical (and mildly erotic) narratives that often took on his wry sense of humor. Warhol would create lithographs and then he would hand-color important or key pages that appeared in the finished books. It is during the 1950s, we encounter the artist's early investigation of repetition as he reimagines his subjects on each page. This element would go on to become one of Warhol's most important and recognizable motifs.
This playful example serves as both a glimpse into Warhol's vast imagination and a striking look at his commercial background. Perhaps this early exposure to mass commercialization increased Warhol's draw toward universal cultural archetypes, making this piece a marvelous precursor to Pop Art.
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Cover, from "In the Bottom of My Garden”
Offset lithograph and watercolor on paper
8.5"H 11"W (work)
17.5"H 19.75"W (framed)
Framed with museum glass
Very good condition.
Note: work has been cleaned by our paper conservator however consistent mild toning remains.
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