Classic Warhols grace CSUN’s art gallery

(Left) Maria Paredes, 16, and her aunt Kaylee Uribe, 29 (Development associate for CSUN Univeristy Development) (Eric Licas /The Sundial)

(Left) Maria Paredes, 16, and her aunt Kaylee Uribe, 29 (Development associate for CSUN Univeristy Development) (Eric Licas /The Sundial)

Eric Licas

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






Exhibit-goers can explore lesser known aspects of Andy Warhol’s prolific career at at a new exhibit that opened Friday evening at CSUN’s main gallery.

“Polaroids, Photographs, and Film: Reviewing Andy Warhol’s Work in the Age of Social Media and Self Curating” spotlights some of the artist’s less iconic works. These include candid still photography and video recordings that feature Warhol’s celebrity acquaintances, excerpts and screenings of two of his experimental films, as well as a few of his renowned silk screen prints.

left to right (including people's backs) Mario Ontiveros, Hansook Oh, Karen Ramirez (freshman undecided 19), Giselle Pernett, Johanna Wong, Alma Barrera (Freshman business&accounting 18), Cintia Segovia Figueroa, Remi Aubuchon (Eric Licas /The Sundial)

left to right (including people’s backs) Mario Ontiveros, Hansook Oh, Karen Ramirez (freshman undecided 19), Giselle Pernett, Johanna Wong, Alma Barrera (Freshman business&accounting 18), Cintia Segovia Figueroa, Remi Aubuchon (Eric Licas /The Sundial)

Cinema and TV arts major Fernando Lopez, 19, marked his calendar for this event as soon as he learned that CSUN would exhibit these works of art.

“I actually prefer his Polaroid and photography work because I feel that it captured the essence of that time period,” Lopez said.

The exhibit was something completely unexpected for other attendees.

“I knew he made movies, but … I was never aware that he did things like that,” said Gilbert Skopp, 83, who serves as a docent at the Skirball Cultural Center.

Animation major Nick Part, 23, stumbled upon the exhibit by chance and was impressed to learn that CSUN’s collection included pieces from Warhol. He knew vaguely of Warhol’s photography and was pleased to discover an exhibit dedicated to it.

“It reminds me of stuff nowadays, where people are taking pictures of food or their friends … It’s always been a thing,” Part said.

That is precisely the connection the exhibit curator, Assistant Professor Mario Ontiveros, hoped visitors would make when he chose the themes of the exhibit, social media and self-referencing. He describes Warhol’s photography as an exhaustive effort to document his environment, similar to modern media sharing via social networks.

Freshman Psychology major Johanna Wong, 18, and Freshman journalism major Giselle Pernett draw shadow puppets over an excerpt of Warhol's "Empire." (Eric Licas /The Sundial).

Freshman Psychology major Johanna Wong, 18, and Freshman journalism major Giselle Pernett draw shadow puppets over an excerpt of Warhol’s “Empire.” (Eric Licas /The Sundial).

“The collection we have is so much like the social media world we live in,” Ontiveros said.

The artwork is part of a gift donated to CSUN and 321 other academic and artistic institutions in 2008 by the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, according to gallery Director Jim Sweeters.

Sweeters believes that the message of the exhibition is more poignant today than it would have been when the gallery first received the artwork eight years ago.

“They called us up and said ‘Hey, do you want these?’ and we really couldn’t turn them down,” Sweeters said.

Numerous institutions began to host exhibits in a short amount of time after the Warhol Foundation’s gift, but Sweeters chose not to rush. In the intervening years, Warhol exhibits became less frequent while the role of social media continued to expand.

The exhibit will further explore the link between Warhol’s world and the contemporary with a series of talks, film screenings and special events including “Selfie With Empire” on Feb. 26. More on the events can be found at the CSUN web page.