Born in1928, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Andy Warhol was a magazine and ad illustrator who became a leading artist of the 1960s Pop art movements. He ventured into a wide variety of art forms, including performance art, film making, video installations and writing.
At age 8, Warhol contracted Chorea ─ a rare and sometimes fatal disease of the nervous system ─ that left him bedridden for several months. It was during these months, that his mother, gave him his first drawing lessons. Drawing soon became Warhol's favorite pastime. He was also an avid fan of the movies, and when at the age of 9, his mother bought him a camera, he took up photography, developing film in a makeshift darkroom he set up in their basement.
When he graduated from college in 1949, Warhol moved to New York City to pursue a career as a commercial artist. He landed a job with Glamour magazine and went on to become one of the most successful commercial artists of the 1950s.
In the late 1950s, Warhol began devoting more attention to painting, and in 1961, he debuted the concept of "pop art"—paintings that focused on mass-produced commercial goods. In 1962, he exhibited the now-iconic paintings of Campbell's soup cans. These small canvases created a major stir in the art world, bringing both Warhol and pop art into the national spotlight for the first time.
Warhol also painted celebrity portraits in vivid and garish colors; his most famous subjects include Marilyn Monroe, Elizabeth Taylor, Mick Jagger and Mao Zedong. As these portraits gained fame and notoriety, Warhol began to receive hundreds of commissions for portraits from socialites and celebrities.
In 1968, Warhol's thriving career almost ended. He was shot by Valerie Solanas, an aspiring writer who had appeared in one of Warhol's films and was reportedly upset over his refusal to use a script she had written. Andy was seriously wounded.
In the 1970s, Warhol published The Philosophy of Andy Warhol and Exposures. He also experimented extensively with video art, producing more than 60 films. Some of his most famous films include Sleep, which depicts a poet sleeping for six hours, and Eat, which shows a man eating a mushroom during 45 minutes. Warhol also worked in sculpture and photography, and in the 1980s, he moved into television, hosting Andy Warhol's TV and Andy Warhol's Fifteen Minutes on MTV.
On February 22, 1987, at the age of 58, Warhol died of cardiac arrest.
In 1968, Warhol said "In the future, everyone will be world-famous for 15 minutes",