The reactions against the Vietnam war, the assassination of Martin Luther King, the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia, student demonstrations and the tennis riots in Båstad – 1968 was a politically turbulent year. This was also the year when Andy Warhol’s very first solo museum exhibition opened at Moderna Museet in Stockholm. Due to the left-wing climate that prevailed in Sweden, especially in the arts, the organisers anticipated an onslaught of criticism against the exhibition for being American propaganda.
However, the opinions of Sweden’s art critics differed widely.
Warhol became part of the contemporary popular and mass media culture he had previously described. In the 1970s, he was New York’s most glamorous celebrity and epitomised the nightclub Studio 54. He designed the first advertising campaign for the then Swedish government-owned brand Absolut Vodka. He was commissioned to make portraits of famous people or less famous people who could afford it.
As in Stockholm the exhibition Warhol 1968 looks back at the exhibition of 1968, but in Malmö the focus on the political turbulence and the murder attempt of Andy Warhol, that partly changed his direction as an artist, during this same year will be emphazised. Together with works from the Moderna Museet Collection, as the famous Cow wallpaper, Ten-Foot Flowers and Electric Chair, several versions of Brillo Boxes and new oeuvres especially for the exhibition in Malmö will be shown, among these the complete selection of record covers designed by Andy Warhol.
Curator: John Peter Nilsson