More than three decades after his death, the Whitney Museum of American Art is showcasing an exhibit called ‘Andy Warhol—From A to B and Back Again.’ Warhol was famous for leading the visual art movement known as pop art and his creation of iconic images of Marilyn Monroe, Elvis, Soup Cans, and Coke bottles. The exhibit, which opened November 12, 2018, and will end March 31, 2019, features over 350 works of art.
The Whitney typically focuses on living artists; however, this exhibit is the first of its kind and the largest Warhol collection since his death in 1987. The artwork is broken up into nineteen different categories, primarily residing on the first, third, and fifth floors. Some categories include ‘Warhol Before Warhol’ showcasing his early illustrations, ‘Hand Painted Pop’ showcasing signs and symbols representing pop war America, and ‘Mechanical Reproduction,’ showcasing pieces of everyday products reworked over and over. Other categories include 'Death and Disaster,’ which was Warhol's exploration of dark times in America and a feature on ‘Most Wanted Men’ which Warhol created a mural for the 1964 World’s Fair in Queens.
On the day that I went, a category called “Flowers’ was the most popular attraction. This category is featured in its own room showing the designs created by himself and his interns as part of a series in the summer of 1964. The art was created on 48- and 24-inch square canvases that the Whitney is displaying from floor to ceiling. This design seems to be the most “instagrammable” room with many people stopping to take group photos.
Audio guides are available to experience for your listening pleasure. The experience allows you to “hear from a range of contemporary artists, curators, and scholars.” Contributors include Jeff Koons, Hank Willis Thomas, Deborah Kass, Peter Halley, Sasha Wortzel, and Richard Meyer.
While the ‘Andy Warhol—From A to B and Back Again’ exhibit is only on three out of the eight floors, admission will allow you access to all exhibits so feel free to explore at your leisure. "I had always heard such great things about the Whitney and jumped at the chance to visit when I heard about the Andy Warhol exhibit. The museum lived up to the hype. They had three completely different exhibits open, so I was able to see a wide variety of classic and modern art," says Melissa Holstein, 31.
Another perk of entry is that the Whitney is a High Line-adjacent building. Visitors can see great views of the city from several different roof decks. Also, if climbing stairs has your stomach growling, the first floor offers a seasonal American restaurant called ‘Untitled.’ The eighth floor also has a cafe serving coffee, pastries, salads, sandwiches, and soups. However, I suggest eating outside of the museum at one of the well-known restaurants in the area like Bubby’s, Serafina or Catch.
Price for admission into the Whitney varies. The cost for adults is $25, $18 seniors and students, and $18 visitors with disabilities. Admission is also free to guests who are 18 and under or members of the museum.