I saw in the newspaper yesterday that one of Andy Warhol’s silver wigs just sold at auction for $10,800.00. It was estimated that it would go for less. I think it should have gone for a lot more. Of all of Andy Warhol’s creations, the crowning achievement was his own persona, and the wig represented that most of all.
Warhol was one of the most influential people of the 60’s through today as far as the world of art. He was more than an artist, he was the spark that lit the fire of artists, musicians and filmmakers. He took the common little things of everyday commercial life, and presented them as more than what they were. In doing so, he made them more than what they had previously been.
Probably the most famous of his works was the Campbell’s Soup can. Most artists took bowls of fruit or flowers to paint and make into art. Andy chose a different object, which noone really thought of as anything beautiful, and made it into more than it had been before.
He brought the Velvet Underground into the limelight by attaching his name with theirs. He inspired everyone around him to experiment and work. He was a catalyst for innovation.
On a personal note, shortly after I first came to NYC, in 1974, I went to a Lou Reed concert. Andy was right in the front. I approached him, mentioned that I was a fan, and asked for an autograph. He took my little notebook that I carried around (still do), and wrote ‘Andy W.’ and a phone number. Holy crap! Andy Warhol just gave me his phone number! I got the courage to actually call it a couple days later, and it was indeed the factory. I didn’t know what to do. I hung up. Never called it again. But, I’ve wondered many times since how my life may have been different if I had asked for Andy and spoken.
As I’ve aged, I’ve noticed that there are opportunities for turning points in your life all the time. It is just up to you to grab them. You are in control of your life, and it is formed by the choices you make. A very famous teacher of mine used to say ‘In your choice is your talent.’ She was talking about acting, but it goes for everything in life as well. Your choices make your life. Good or bad, you have noone to blame but yourself.