To create this work, Andy Warhol used an image of the Statue of Liberty from a post card, and screenprinted it 24 times using blue and red inks. The first version was created in 1962, and was the beginning of his Death and Disaster
series of paintings. A second generation immigrant himself, Warhol was strongly aware of the statue’s status as an American icon and a symbol of hope, and also of the many lives that fell apart in its shadow. The Statue of Liberty was the first sight to greet many immigrants reaching America, but many of them would be denied the right to stay, and hundreds took their own lives at Ellis Island rather than attempt the journey back.
Statue of Liberty
Date of work
Original: ANDY WARHOL Statue of Liberty, 1963 Silkscreen ink and synthetic polymer paint on canvas, 78 x 80 3/4 inches ©/®/TM 2020 The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc.
Andy Warhol (1928 – 1987) was an American artist whose work commented on contemporary themes in American society: consumerism, celebrity, mass production, disaster and death. His openness to subject matter was matched by a willingness to explore all media, resulting in an innovative approach to painting, photography, drawing, printmaking, and experimental filmmaking. He introduced popular everyday subjects into his practice, openly acknowledging the wide-ranging influences on his work, and built a lasting reputation as one of the most important figures of the Pop Art movement.