BIG JEWEL

An early look at 'Andy Warhol: The Last Decade' at the Baltimore Museum of Art

Baltimore Museum of Art showcases more than 50 Warhol works spanning the last years of his career.
Sunday, September 12, 2010

There was a moment, in the late 1970s and early '80s, when it seemed pretty clear that Andy Warhol had lost it. There was his appearance on "The Love Boat"; his willingness to do a portrait of and for just about anyone; his huge, decorative pai ntings made with urine or imitating camouflage -- it all looked like a big and splashy sellout. Now it's becoming clear that Warhol's selling out should count as some of his best and most important art. A recent show in London and Ottawa made the convincing argument that some of the main figures of today -- Jeff Koons, Damien Hirst, Takashi Murakami -- couldn't have existed without Warhol in his final phase. (He died in 1987.) A major show called "Andy Warhol: The Last Decade," opening Oct. 17 at the Baltimore Museum of Art, will give us a chance to figure out if Warhol truly was one of those great artists, in the mold of Titian or Rembrandt or C├ęzanne, who came on strong at the end. -- Blake Gopnik

For a gallery of images from the upcoming exhibit "Andy Warhol: The Last Decade," visit http://washingtonpost.com/fallarts.


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