The Shadow (1981)
About this artwork
‘The Shadow’ was one of several popular, American fictional characters that Warhol drew inspiration from for a series of prints called ‘Myths’ in 1981. The figure (The Shadow) first appeared on the radio in the 1930s before his stories were developed into a comic-strip. This self-portrait drawing is based on a photograph of Warhol as this character and although he doesn’t wear The Shadow’s black cloak or broad-rimmed hat, the lighting used causes a strong shadow to be cast of his profile. Warhol then made a simple, stylised line drawing based on this image.
- title: The Shadow
- accession number: AR00594
- artist: Andy WarholAmerican (1928 - 1987)
- gallery: In Storage
- object type: Work on paper
- materials: Graphite on paper
- date created: 1981
- measurements: 80.00 x 61.00 cm (framed: 102.00 x 83.50 x 4.30 cm)
- credit line: ARTIST ROOMS National Galleries of Scotland and Tate. Acquired jointly through The d'Offay Donation with assistance from the National Heritage Memorial Fund and the Art Fund 2008
- copyright: © The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / DACS, London 2016.
Andy Warhol was born 'Andrew Warhola' to Slovakian immigrant parents living in Pittsburgh in America. Warhol's subject matter was taken from popular culture, in the form of advertising, comics, magazines and packaging. He was able to produce his works quickly by transferring images onto canvas or paper through photography and screenprinting, sometimes with the help of assistants. Warhol stated that he wanted to make works that showed no trace of having been produced by hand. His interest in mass production reflected the fast-developing consumer culture he recognised in America. His New York studio, 'The Factory,' became a popular meeting place for artists, drop-outs, celebrities and bands.