Andy Warhol Mao (F & S II.125A)Facts | History | Meaning
Catalogue Title: Mao (F & S II.125A) Year: 1974 Size 33 1/2 × 29 1/2" 101.9 x 74.9cm Medium: Screenprint on wallpaper Edition: Unlimited edition with approximately 100 signed in felt pen in 1979.
Andy Warhol Mao (F & S II.125A)Meaning & History
'I have been reading so much about China.. They don't believe in creativity. The only picture they ever have is of Mao Zedong.'
Mao, produced in 1974, is a screenprint on wallpaper depicting the Chinese president of the People’s Republic of China, Mao Zedong.
This work fits into an important trajectory of the artist’s - in the space of one year, between 1973 and 1974, Warhol created nearly 200 silkscreen paintings of Mao. Since the U.S President’s visit to China in 1973 Mao, and indeed the Chinese dictatorship and the way it functioned, was something of an obsession to Warhol. He said: ‘I have been reading so much about China.. They don’t believe in creativity. The only picture they ever have is of Mao Zedong.’
Unlike Mao’s large-scale silkscreens, or his earlier 1973 portfolio, here Warhol has sketched Mao in his signature ‘blotted line’ drawing technique. The focal point of the image is Mao’s face, which Warhol has amplified in purple. The shock of colour can be seen to rebel against the uniformity and stifling of creativity to which Warhol was referring.
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