Andy Warhol created a scandal at the 1964 New York World’s Fair when he chose to enlarge mug shots from an NYPD booklet featuring the 13 most wanted criminals of 1962. The exhibition was part of a set of public commissions for the exterior of the Philip Johnson-designed New York State Pavilion. The 13 Most Wanted Men was installed April 15, 1964, but due to anticipated controversy Fair officials painted over everything with silver paint. When the Fair opened to the public, visitors were all that was visible was an enormous silver panel.
During that summer Warhol produced 20 Most Wanted Men paintings on narrower canvases with the same screens he had used to make the mural. They were first shown to the public at The Sonnabend Gallery in Paris in 1967. These pieces were recently brought together again for an exhibition at the Queens Museum in April 2014 just 200 yards from the original site of Warhol’s mural.
The exhibition will open at The Andy Warhol Museum on September 27th.
The Andy Warhol Museum is located on the North Shore of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The permanent art collection includes 900 paintings; approximately 100 sculptures; nearly 2,000 works on paper; more than 1,000 published and unique prints; and 4,000 photographs. The archives collection features Warhol’s papers, source materials, and thousands of collectibles, books, and inspiration for the artist’s work. Their impressive film & video collection includes over 60 feature films, 200 of Warhol’s Screen Tests, and over 4,000 videos. The museum opened in May of 1994, joining three other Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh, including the Carnegie Museum of Art, Carnegie Museum of Natural History, and the Carnegie Science Center.
Images Courtesy of The Andy Warhol Museum