Pittsburgh born Andy Warhol, died on this day in 1987 aged 58.  He was a leading figure in the visual art movement known as pop art.  As an artist he was renowned and sometimes controversial, with his work exploring the relationship between artistic expression, celebrity culture and advertisement.  His creative career took him through a range of mediums including painting, sculpture, film and music. 


The expression “everyone wants their 15 minutes of fame” became synonymous with Andy Warhol, who in 1968 said that "In the future, everyone will be world-famous for 15 minutes."


Today, living in a society dominated by reality television, and You Tube, he may have been on to something, but are 15 minutes better than none at all?  Do we mock those who venture into reality television because we are jealous?  Or are we right to remain slightly superior because reality TV is for those who have no talent but want their moment in the limelight nonetheless?  Can we say with confidence that fame and talent are not intrinsically linked?


Xfactor, Britain’s Got Talent, You’ve got to Dance, are just some of the television shows that are designed to ship out ‘ready made stars’ as though they are on a conveyor belt in a fame making factory.  Assured of instant success, thousands of wannabes go through the audition process every year.  There is usually a glimmer of a rough diamond to come out of each show, but do they stand a chance at a long and successful career?  Previous winners have more regularly than not fallen by the waste side, forgotten after the final bow on the final show.  Anyone remember Steve Brookstein or Leon Jackson? 


On the 25th anniversary of Andy Warhol’s death, Sky Arts 1 is releasing a new show, this time aimed at visual artists.  Competing for a solo show at a prestigious museum and a $100,000 prize, every week the 14 contestants must defend their pieces to a prestigious judging panel to remain in the competition and get one step closer to their dreams of a successful art career.


As a creative, do you feel that a stint on a reality TV show is the best way to progress in your career? 


“Next Great Artist” – Episode one, Wednesday 22nd Feb 2012, SkyArts1, 8pm


ANDY WARHOL FACT: Two days before Robert F. Kennedy was fatally shot, Andy Warhol himself barely survived an attempt on his life.  June 3, 1968, Valerie Solanas shot Warhol at his studio, claiming that he "had too much control over my life."

Article by Lucy G / 22nd February 2012


Leave a comment

Ready for Your 15mins?