Campbell's Soup

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Andy Warhol (American, 1928–1987)
Campbell's Soup, 1965
Acrylic on canvas
36 × 24 in. (91.44 × 60.96 cm)
Gift of Mrs. Harry Lynde Bradley M1977.156
Photo credit: Efraim Lev-er
© 2008 The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc. / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
Currently on View

Andy Warhol began his career as a commercial artist and once observed that "America started the tradition where the richest consumers buy essentially the same things as the poorest. You can be watching TV and see Coca-Cola, and you know the President drinks Coke, Liz Taylor drinks Coke, and just think, you can drink Coke too." Fascinated by popular culture in all its forms, Warhol depicted celebrities as well as common consumer products. Campbell's Soup is one of the artist's many renditions of this American staple. Initially copying the soup cans faithfully, he soon substituted different color combinations for the traditional red-and-white label. Through this electric-hued canvas from 1965, Warhol, intentionally or not, alludes to the variety of soups available through the one, unmistakable label. Warhol did not idealize the things he depicted; rather, he used the same images repeatedly to signify the banality of a technological world dominated by machine-made products. He provocatively stated: "I want to be a machine," thereby challenging the Western notion of the artistic genius as one who has original ideas.

Publication History
Milwaukee Art Museum Insider, Winter 2013–14, p. 28, color illus. (detail).

Christie's Post-War and Contemporary Art Evening Auction [auction catalog], June 25, 2013, p. 131, color illus.

Kelly, Chelsea Emelie. People's Choice: Your Top 25 Works of Art in the Collection. Milwaukee Art Museum: Under the Wings, April 5, 2013.

Kelly, Chelsea Emelie. Warhol, Warhol, Everywhere a Warhol. Milwaukee Art Museum: Under the Wings, September 20, 2013.

Crone, Rainer, and Wouter D. Wirth. Andy Warhol: Colored Campbell's Soup Cans. New York: L&M Arts, 2011. color illus. p.29, p.67.

Aquin, Stéphanie. Warhol Live: Music and Dance in Andy Warhol's Work. Montréal : Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, 2008, p. 108, illus. p. 101.

Andera, Margaret, Nonie Gadsden, Britt Salvesen, and Laurie Winters. Collection Guide: Milwaukee Art Museum. Milwaukee, Wisconsin: Milwaukee Art Museum, 2004, pp. 53 and 72, cat. 88, color illus. p. 53.

Abe, Nobuo, ed. dir. 20th Century Masters from the Milwaukee Art Museum. Translated and edited by Brain Trust Inc. Japan: 20th Century Masters from the Milwaukee Art Museum Catalogue Committee, 1994, pp. 120 and 145, cat. 54, color illus. p. 121.

Milwaukee Art Museum. Warhol/Beuys/Polke Exhibition. Milwaukee: Milwaukee Art Museum, 1987, cat. 10a, color illus. p. 32.

Goldstein, Rosalie, ed. Guide to the Permanent Collection. Milwaukee, Wisconsin: Milwaukee Art Museum, 1986, p. 219, b/w illus. p. 219.

Milwaukee Art Center. Personal Selections from the Mrs. Harry Lynde Bradley Collection. New Orleans: Bradley Family Foundation, 1975, color illus. p. 100.

Milwaukee Art Center. The Collection of Mrs. Harry Lynde Bradley. Milwaukee, Wisconsin: Milwaukee Art Center, p. 183 and 1968, cat. 525.
Exhibition History
Andy Warhol: Colored Campbell's Soup Cans, L&M Arts, New York, NY, April 21–June 11, 2011.

Warhol Live: Music and Dance in Andy Warhol's Work, Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, Montreal, Canada, September 25, 2008–January 18, 2009; Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco (DeYoung), San Francisco, CA, February 14–May 17, 2009; The Andy Warhol Museum, Pittsburgh, PA, June 10–September 15, 2009.

20th Century Masters from the Milwaukee Art Museum, Isetan Museum of Art, Tokyo, July 2–August 9,1994; Matsuzakaya Art Museum, Nagoya, August 11–September 4, 1994; Hokkaido Asahikawa Museum of Art, Asahikawa, September 10–October 16, 1994; Daimaru Museum, Umeda-Osaka, October 19–November 7, 1994; Chiba Sogo Museum of Art, Chiba, November 26–December 29, 1994; Marugame Genichiro-Inokuma Museum of Contemporary Art, Marugame, January 14–February 26, 1995.

Andy Warhol: Works from the Permanent Collection, Milwaukee Art Museum, February 22–April 25, 1993.

Warhol/Beuys/Polke Exhibition, Milwaukee Art Museum, June 19– August 16, 1987; Contemporary Art Museum, Houston, Texas, September 12–November 15, 1987.

The Collection of Mrs. Harry Lynde Bradley, Milwaukee Art Center, October 25, 1968–February 23, 1969.

This information is subject to change as the result of ongoing research.