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Andy Warhol

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Overview

In a work of great wisdom and insight, art critic and philosopher Arthur Danto delivers a compact, masterful tour of Andy Warhol’s personal, artistic, and philosophical transformations. Danto traces the evolution of the pop artist, including his early reception, relationships with artists such as Jasper Johns and Robert Rauschenberg, and the Factory phenomenon. He offers close readings of individual Warhol works, including their social context and philosophical dimensions, key differences with predecessors such as Marcel Duchamp, and parallels with successors like Jeff Koons. Danto brings to bear encyclopedic knowledge of Warhol’s time and shows us Warhol as an endlessly multidimensional figure—artist, political activist, filmmaker, writer, philosopher—who retains permanent residence in our national imagination.

Danto suggests that "what makes him an American icon is that his subject matter is always something that the ordinary American understands: everything, or nearly everything he made art out of came straight out of the daily lives of very ordinary Americans. . . . The tastes and values of ordinary persons all at once were inseparable from advanced art."

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Editorial Reviews

ARTnews

— Doug McClemont
John Perreault

“Grounding the Pop Pope in the aesthetic discourse of The Transfiguration of the Commonplace, philosopher and art critic Danto presents Warhol’s achievement with great clarity and acuity. This is now the essential book on Warhol and on the philosophical basis of contemporary art.”—John Perreault, Artopia (artsjournal.com/artopia)
David Carrier

"A distinctive original contribution that can be read in a single sitting, but embodies the wisdom of a lifetime of looking, reflection and writing. It's as if Danto has been waiting all these years to produce this magnificent synthesis."—David Carrier, Cleveland Institute of Art
Victor Bockris

“This study of what makes And Warhol a fascinating artist from a philosophical perspective explores new territory in our unending quest to evaluate the contribution of the greatest American artist of the 20th century. Arthur Danto’s Andy Warhol is a deep read.”—Victor Bockris
Steven Watson

“When Arthur Danto encountered Andy Warhol's Brillo Box in 1964, the experience transformed his vision of art. This book exhibits his philosophical heft and engagement with Warhol.”—Steven Watson, author of Factory Made: Warhol and the Sixties
Richard Shusterman

“Arthur Danto's encounter with Andy Warhol's Brillo Boxes in 1964 not only transformed his philosophical career, but also reshaped the course of twentieth-century aesthetics. His masterful new book articulates the artworld contexts, cultural issues, creative strategies, and aesthetic ideas through which Warhol's special genius was expressed. Danto paints a definitive portrait of Warhol's meaning as an American icon, while also exemplifying the critical intelligence and philosophical imagination that has earned Danto his own iconic status in the world of art theory and criticism.”—Richard Shusterman, author of Pragmatist Aesthetics
New York Review of Books - Richard Dorment

"As Danto explains in his brilliant short study of Warhol, the question Warhol asked is not 'What is art?' but 'What is the difference between two things, exactly alike, one of which is art and one of which is not?'"—Richard Dorment, The New York Review of Books

ARTnews - Doug McClemont

“A concise and insightful primer that can be enjoyed both by those who know little about the artist and by rabid Warhol enthusiasts . . . wholly satisfying . . . solid scholarship and brilliant turns of phrase.”--Doug McClemont, ARTnews

David Carrier
"A distinctive original contribution that can be read in a single sitting, but embodies the wisdom of a lifetime of looking, reflection and writing. It's as if Danto has been waiting all these years to produce this magnificent synthesis."—David Carrier, Cleveland Institute of Art
Steven Watson
“When Arthur Danto encountered Andy Warhol's Brillo Box in 1964, the experience transformed his vision of art. This book exhibits his philosophical heft and engagement with Warhol.”—Steven Watson, author of Factory Made: Warhol and the Sixties
Richard Shusterman
“Arthur Danto's encounter with Andy Warhol's Brillo Boxes in 1964 not only transformed his philosophical career, but also reshaped the course of twentieth-century aesthetics. His masterful new book articulates the artworld contexts, cultural issues, creative strategies, and aesthetic ideas through which Warhol's special genius was expressed. Danto paints a definitive portrait of Warhol's meaning as an American icon, while also exemplifying the critical intelligence and philosophical imagination that has earned Danto his own iconic status in the world of art theory and criticism.”—Richard Shusterman, author of Pragmatist Aesthetics
John Perreault
“Grounding the Pop Pope in the aesthetic discourse of The Transfiguration of the Commonplace, philosopher and art critic Danto presents Warhol’s achievement with great clarity and acuity. This is now the essential book on Warhol and on the philosophical basis of contemporary art.”—John Perreault, Artopia (artsjournal.com/artopia)
Victor Bockris
“This study of what makes And Warhol a fascinating artist from a philosophical perspective explores new territory in our unending quest to evaluate the contribution of the greatest American artist of the 20th century. Arthur Danto’s Andy Warhol is a deep read.”—Victor Bockris
New York Review of Books - Richard Dorment
"As Danto explains in his brilliant short study of Warhol, the question Warhol asked is not 'What is art?' but 'What is the difference between two things, exactly alike, one of which is art and one of which is not?'"—Richard Dorment, The New York Review of Books
ARTnews - Doug McClemont
“A concise and insightful primer that can be enjoyed both by those who know little about the artist and by rabid Warhol enthusiasts . . . wholly satisfying . . . solid scholarship and brilliant turns of phrase.”—Doug McClemont, ARTnews
Fred Kaplan
Danto's larger points about Warhol's impact are indisputable, and he traces its lineage to a moment in 1961 when Warhol made two paintings of Coke bottles—one with Abstract Expressionist drippings, the other without—and chose the latter as the template for his subsequent work. "It was a mandate and a breakthrough," Danto writes. "The mandate was: paint what we are. The breakthrough was the insight into what we are. We are the kind of people that are looking for the kind of happiness advertisements promise us that we can have, easily and cheaply." Danto calls the subsequent era "the Age of Warhol" because of this blending of high art and commercial art—of art and life broadly.
—The Washington Post
Deborah Solomon
Danto is an elegant and erudite writer, and his sentences go down smoothly.
—The New York Times
Publishers Weekly
This penetrating new entry in Yale's Icons of America series synthesizes biography, cultural criticism and aesthetics. Former Nation art critic and Columbia philosophy professor emeritus Danto (After the End of Art) argues that Andy Warhol radically redefined the question of art. His Brillo Boxes and Campbell's Soup Cans challenged the viewer to ask, “What is the difference between two things, exactly alike, one of which is art and one of which is not?” Danto, whose visit to a Warhol show in 1964 inspired him to become a philosopher of art, views many of Warhol's most important works as answers to such philosophical puzzles. Danto's writing is elegant and his insights acute: the Marilyn Diptych's “transformative repetition” is linked to Coltrane's compositions; Warhol's final Last Supper series represented, Danto argues convincingly in a profound final chapter, the culmination of the artist's “mission to externalize the interiority of our shared world.” This valuable work of critical cultural analysis reveals aspects of Warhol so far uncovered and unexplored that will appeal widely to the interested generalist as well as to scholars of contemporary art, American culture and aesthetics. Photos. (Oct.)
New York Review of Books

"As Danto explains in his brilliant short study of Warhol, the question Warhol asked is not ''What is art?'' but ''What is the difference between two things, exactly alike, one of which is art and one of which is not?''"—Richard Dorment, The New York Review of Books

— Richard Dorment

New York Times Book Review

"Danto is an elegant and erudite writer, and his sentences go down smoothly."—Deborah Solomon, The New York Times Book Review

— Deborah Solomon

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780300135558
  • Publisher: Yale University Press
  • Publication date: 10/20/2009
  • Series: Icons of America Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 192
  • Sales rank: 1,366,756
  • Product dimensions: 5.80 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author


Arthur C. Danto was Johnsonian Professor Emeritus of Philosophy at Columbia University and art critic for The Nation. He was the author of numerous books, including Unnatural Wonders: Essays from the Gap Between Art and Life, After the End of Art, and Beyond the Brillo Box: The Visual Arts in Post-Historical Perspective.
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Table of Contents

Preface

Remerciements

Note sur les notes

1. La vitrine chez Bonwit

2. Le Pop Art, la politique et le fosse entre l'art et la vie

3. La Brillo Box

4. Images animees

5. La premiere mort

6. Andy Warhol Enterprises

7. Religion et experience commune

Bibliographie

Index

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted November 25, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Absolutely Horrific

    These are the most poorly written pages I think I've ever read. Save your money!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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