warhol zebraAlthough Andy Warhol is best known for his Pop Art, but believe it or not he had an interest in nature that began as a child.

In his youth, Warhol drew animals in science class, kept a flower garden in the family’s yard, and sketched at local conservatories. In college, he frequented the zoo in Highland Park to draw and study animals.

Warhol’s series of ten silk-screened images of critically endangered animals showcase not only Warhol’s concern for nature, but also his dramatic use of line and color.  Warhol’s Endangered Animal series sought to make celebrities out of these wild creatures to bring attention to their plight.

Andy Warhol & Nature
by guest artist/author: Bret McNee

Recently, I visited the National Museum of Wildlife Art in Jackson Hole, WY. It is the only museum dedicated to the wildlife art culture in the United States, so I was pretty excited to see it.  The location is fitting, given it boarders the Grand Teton National Park and Yellowstone National Park where wildlife is abundant.

As I was browsing the museum gallery, I came across several works that looked like they had been styled after Andy Warhol. As I looked closer, to my surprise, the paintings were indeed his.

warhol butterfly painting nature

It was really fascinating to see another period Warhol’s work which I did not know existed.  Until I saw those pictures, I thought he just did his ‘normal things': camo screen prints, famous people prints of Marilyn Monroe, John Wayne, Elizabeth Taylor… etc.  Warhol’s inspiration for this series was endangered species at that time.  I am glad to see the traditional museum could respect his work as something to do with nature, and it was refreshing to see this series was NOT in some pop art museum.

warhol painting rhino wildlifeWarhol is an inspiration for me.  I love his originality, his messages, and his attention to color.  I think this series says a lot.  The images are screen printed, but colored on top of with colored pencil and paints.

I believe there is a hidden metphor in Warhol’s work:  the screen printing symbolizes the man made and the machine… and how we are killing off our natural world’s beauty with our own designs.  I think Andy is trying to tell us, in this own way… To simply stop killing our world.  www.riotforquiet.com

warhol tiger painting natureHere are some articles you might find interesting:

Check out Lori’s art travels

Graffiti: Vandalism or Art?

10 tips to Bring Visitors to Your Open Studio or Art Fair Booth

Learn the Two Biggest Mistakes Artists Make with Social Media

One Simple and Effective Way to Show the World You are a Pro

10 Important Things Every Aspiring Artist Should Know: Part 2

Brand Yourself as an Artist on Twitter

How to “Jump-Start” Your Art Career!

When Are You Ready to Call Yourself a Professional Artist

Do Artists Need Commercial Gallery Representation?

by Lori McNee

Lori McNee is a professional artist who specializes in still life, and landscape oil paintings. She is an exhibiting member of Oil Painters of America, Plein Air Painters of Idaho, serves on the Plein Air Mag Board of Advisors, and is an Artist Ambassador to Arches/Canson/Royal Talens. As the owner of FineArtTips.com, Lori blogs about fine art tips, marketing, and social media advice for the aspiring and professional artist. As a social media influencer, Lori ranks as one of the Top 100 Most Powerful Women on Twitter, has been featured in the Wall Street Journal and named a #TwitterPowerhouse by The Huffington Post. She is a keynote speaker, has been a talk show host for Plum TV, writes for F+W Media publications including Artist’s Magazine, Artist’s & Graphic Designer’s Market, Photographer’s Market. Also, Zero to 100,000: Social Media Tips & Tricks for Small Businesses. Lori is also a member of the CBS Entertainment Tonight & The Insider Tweet Team.

7 thoughts on “Andy Warhol & Nature Pop Art

  1. Pingback: Tweets that mention Andy Warho & Nature | Lori McNee Artist -- Topsy.com

  2. Ivan says:

    Hi Lori,
    A few days ago, I discovered the Andy’s “Endangered Species” collection at a dedicated exhibition in Mons, Belgium. While analysing the paintings, I discovered that the contour lines are gradient in colour.

    I’d like to find out what technique he used to achieve this perfect gradient.
    Were these contour lines the last layer in his creation process?
    If you have any information or tip, I’d be interested.

    Thank you in advance.
    Cheers,
    Ivan

    • Lori McNee says:

      Hello Ivan, I am not sure about Andy’s layering process. I would suggest contacting the museum where his works are on display. The curators will be able to answer that question. I wouldn’t want to steer you the wrong way…thank you for stopping by! ~Lori

  3. Pingback: How Nature Has Been Portrayed in Art | Gallery24Seven Blog

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>