Warhol’s Soup Cans—Now With Actual Soup?
The idea of owning one of Andy Warhol’s landmark Pop Art paintings from the Campbell’s Soup Cans series of the early 1960s seems a dream, unless you have some spare millions to dream with. On the 50th anniversary of Warhol’s first solo show, which featured the start of the soup cans, Target is now offering a slightly more affordable version (shown above). For the low, low price of 75 cents you can own a Warhol and have yourself some lunch for the bargain. The 1.2 million cans stocked on Target store shelves across the United States are already making their way out the door (and even onto eBay). Is this a good thing for modern art, or is the whole enterprise full of soup?
The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, the group controlling licensing of all things Andy, teamed up with Target and Campbell’s Soup when this unique marketing opportunity for all three organizations appeared on the radar. “This is not something that we do every day," Campbell's Soup’s director of communications, Liesl Henderson, remarked. “But we've maintained a collaborative relationship with the Warhol Foundation over the years, and there's a fascination, it seems, with all things Warhol.” The design of the cans themselves features the more expressive, explosive colors Warhol used in later riffs on the soup can motif and not the more faithful red, white, and gold of the classic Campbell’s can. On the back of each commemorative can appears a portrait of Warhol himself saying via cartoon bubble one of his famous fortune-cookie pronouncements on art.
With the Metropolitan Museum of Art set to launch their Regarding Warhol: Sixty Artists, Fifty Years exhibition this week, it seems the perfect time for marketing Warhol to the masses, not that Warhol himself didn’t do that himself as part of the whole Pop Art movement. Maybe the Met will put Campbell’s tomato soup on the cafeteria menu and throw in the can as a keepsake? Target’s targeting of a mass audience for the Warhol tribute cans appears to be a big hit so far, but if it can generate interest in a reevaluation and renewed appreciation of Warhol’s art, the consequences go so much further. Just as Duchamp stood at the center of all art, including Warhol’s, for the whole middle of the 20th century, Warhol is the unavoidable fact of life for all artists who have been working since the 1960s. You either work with or against Andy, but you can never work without him somewhere in the back of your mind.
Of course, too much Warhol can also be a bad thing, although I’m sure Andy himself would never admit to that fact. As I wrote about previously, some observers watching closely the untimely demise of the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art (LAMoCA) blame art dealer turned LAMoCA director Jeffrey Deitch’s Warhol obsession for the crumbling of that once proud, artist-centered museum. Can too much Warhol lead to an overwhelming dread of his art? Or, as MTV used to market itself, is too much never enough? If Warhol is about challenging overconsumption and hyperconsumerism in America, isn’t being disconcertingly full of soup, especially Warhol commemorative soup, exactly what we want, if not need? Perhaps these commemorative cans will one day become the 21st century equivalent of Billy Beer—a momentary fad full of a once edible commodity—but if they do, then maybe they’ll finally succeed in the mission Warhol originally intended them to carry out.
Antimicrobial resistance is growing worldwide, rendering many "work horse" medicines ineffective. Without intervention, drug-resistant pathogens could lead to millions of deaths by 2050. Thankfully, companies like Pfizer are taking action.
- Antimicrobial-resistant pathogens are one of the largest threats to global health today.
- As we get older, our immune systems age, increasing our risk of life threatening infections. Without reliable antibiotics, life expectancy could decline for the first time in modern history.
- If antibiotics become ineffective, common infections could result in hospitalization or even death. Life-saving interventions like cancer treatments and organ transplantation would become more difficult, more often resulting in death. Routine procedures would become hard to perform.
- Without intervention, resistant pathogens could result in 10 million annual deaths by 2050.
- By taking a multi-faceted approach—inclusive of adherence to good stewardship, surveillance and responsible manufacturing practices, as well as an emphasis on prevention and treatment—companies like Pfizer are fighting to help curb the spread.
No, the Syrian civil war is not over. But it might be soon. Time for a recap
- The War in Syria has dropped off the radar, but it's not over (yet)
- This 1-minute video shows how the fronts have moved – and stabilised – over the past 22 months
- Watching this video may leave you both better informed, and slightly queasy: does war need a generic rock soundtrack?
Sarco assisted suicide pods come in three different styles, and allow you to die quickly and painlessly. They're even quite beautiful to look at.
Death: it happens to everyone (except, apparently, Keanu Reeves). But while the impoverished and lower-class people of the world die in the same ol' ways—cancer, heart disease, and so forth—the upper classes can choose hip and cool new ways to die. Now, there's an assisted-suicide pod so chic and so stylin' that peeps (young people still say peeps, right?) are calling it the "Tesla" of death... it's called... the Sarco!
Entrepreneur and author Andrew Horn shares his rules for becoming an assured conversationalist.
- To avoid basing action on external validation, you need to find your "authentic voice" and use it.
- Finding your voice requires asking the right questions of yourself.
- There are 3-5 questions that you would generally want to ask people you are talking to.
SMARTER FASTER trademarks owned by The Big Think, Inc. All rights reserved.