American Icons: Warhol's Soup Cans


Friday, August 07, 2009

Campbell's soup cans, warhol Feature Card_Big2

Andy Warhol told people he painted soup because he ate it for lunch every day, but the paintings remain mysterious more than 40 years later.

Around 1961, Andy Warhol started painting cans of Campbell's soup, in all 32 varieties. He liked to tell people that his mother made him Campbell's soup and that's why he painted it.

The soup cans are probably the most recognizable images in American art, and Warhol intended it that way. He borrowed the Campbell's brand fame to help make his own; he appeared in Time in 1962 as part of the Pop revolution that was remaking art — destroying the serious, sublime aspirations of artists like Jackson Pollock and Mark Rothko. Warhol was doing Campbell's soup at the same time he was painting Marilyn Monroe and Liz Taylor. In his art, Campbell's was a "star" like a movie pinup.

But as obvious as they look, the paintings are still mysterious today: Why paint something you can buy in a grocery store? What did Warhol mean? Studio 360's David Krasnow looked for answers.


David Krasnow

Comments [2]

Lorene Landis from Derby, Kansas

Please redesign the top of the can so it can be opened with an electric can opener. I have arithritis and can not pull those tabs. If you don't want to redesign the tops make the bottoms so they can be opened by can openers.

Nov. 20 2008 12:09 PM
Gallery Warhol

Great podcast. Podcasts like this are key to delving further into the individual works of Warhol. Currently I have some information about key artworks but our goal is to have unique information about each work and this podcast is very helpful. Thankyou!

Mar. 18 2008 12:08 PM

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