Discover how artist Andy Warhol made his colourful and iconic silkscreen prints
A bit of background
From Brillo boxes and black bean soup to portraits of films stars, Andy Warhol is famous for his bright and bold paintings and prints that celebrate 1960s popular culture. This style of art is called pop art.
Printmaking appealed to Warhol as it allowed him to repeat a basic image and create endless variations of it by using different colours or sometimes adding paint to the printed surface.
Isn't life a series of images that change as they repeat themselves?
In 1972, Warhol made a series of screenprints of Chairman Mao, the leader of communist China. Mao may seem an unlikely celebrity, but in the early 1970s America’s president, Richard Nixon, visited Beijing and Mao’s portrait was everywhere – making him something of a contemporary icon. Warhol used a photograph from the cover of the Little Red Book (a book of quotations by Chairman Mao) as the starting point for his portrait.