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“Chanel N˚5,” printed by the estate of Andy Warhol, comes from the artist’s “Ads” portfolio based on popular advertising campaigns and logos in American culture. Chanel No. 5, created by Ernest Beaux for Coco Chanel in 1921, became a product synonymous with sophistication and luxury, two qualities Warhol hoped to instill with his work. The rich hues of blue, red, and gold, and green brings this simple rectangular bottle to life. Due to the underlining criticism present throughout Warhol’s oeuvre, works such as “Chanel N˚5” have become modern day vanitas, alerting viewers to their own mortality and the superficiality of consumerism.
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Andy Warhol (born Andrew Warhola) (American, 1928-1987) was a leading figure in the Pop art movement. He is particularly known for the breadth of his oeuvre, as it encompassed painting, hand drawing, printmaking, photography, silk screening, sculpture, film and music. Fascinated with celebrity culture and status, his silkscreens of pop icons and mundane objects, were particularly successful and cemented his place as a “celebrity” artist. His studio, The Factory, was a famous gathering place that brought together distinguished intellectuals, drag queens, playwrights, Hollywood celebrities, and wealthy patrons.