Willy Brandt (1976)
About this artwork
During the 1970s Warhol realised that commissioned portraits could be extremely profitable. Alongside the rich and famous he completed portraits of politicians and heads of state, although these were more often commissioned by third parties than the sitters themselves. Willy Brandt was a German politician and Chancellor of West Germany. Winning the Nobel Peace Prize in 1971 for a policy to improve relations between the East and the West in Europe, his career came to an abrupt end in 1974 following revelations that a personal assistant was operating as a spy. This portrait shows Brandt on a vivid red background with contrasting swatches of lilac colour on his brow–line. His heavy, piercing gaze creates the impression that he is a man not to be messed with.
- title: Willy Brandt
- accession number: AR00420
- artist: Andy WarholAmerican (1928 - 1987)
- gallery: In Storage
- object type: Work on paper
- medium: Screenprint on paper
- date created: 1976
- measurements: 84.00 x 59.00 cm (framed: 90.80 x 66.00 x 3.80 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.