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A rainbow of hand-dyed, extra-small surgical corsets worn by Andy Warhol after lifesaving surgery from gunshot wounds. A selection of Julia Warhola’s hats. Soup can stencils. Well-worn wigs. The artist’s extensive collection of telephones, cowboy boots, and dental molds.
This visual feast, informed by decades of storytelling and historical research, is among the highlights of A is for Archive: Warhol’s World from A to Z, a quirky exploration of the pop icon as only the legendary Warhol archivist Matt Wrbican could present it. The newly released book, on sale now at The Warhol Store, is an insider’s look at the man and his artistic practice, featuring more than 2,400 objects from Warhol’s Archive that are newly cataloged and photographed. Of the 400 illustrations that appear, many are in print for the first time.
Some of these objects will be presented live on the Carnegie Lecture Hall stage as part of the September 12
A is for Archive book release, co-presented by Pittsburgh Arts & Lectures. Doors to the free event featuring Warhol biographer Blake Gopnik, Warhol archivist Erin Byrne, and the book’s editor, Abigail Franzen-Sheehan, open at 6 p.m. Matt Wrbican, who passed away June 1 after a long and courageous fight with brain cancer, will be deeply missed.
Top left: Following Warhol’s shooting in 1968, the surgical reconstruction of his internal organs made it necessary for the artist to wear a corset to keep his midsection in proper alignment.
Top right: “Warhol began wearing a wig in the mid-1950s,” writes Matt Wrbican. “Initially a subtle hairpiece, it later became an essential aspect of his look: reportedly painted silver in the 1960s, more natural in the 1970s, and less so in the 1980s. Perhaps more than any other accessory, his wig was a protective shield covering up a vulnerability.”
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