Hamburger
© The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / DACS, London 2009

Reference URL

Hamburger 1985 - 1986
  • Artist Rooms
During the mid 1980s Warhol returned to the newspaper adverts that had informed his paintings of the early 1960s. He created a group of works called ‘Ad’s and Illustrations’ that differed from his photographic screenprints and highly stylised images of celebrities. They are mostly black and white and were created by tracing the original adverts by hand, which creates a looser, graphic quality. During the 1980s the U.S.A. was still in the depths of the Cold War. Within this context three themes emerge in these paintings: war, death and religion. This diptych, featuring the iconic American hamburger, is reminiscent of Warhol’s earlier screenprints of American popular culture. Yet it also resembles both a mushroom cloud (associated with nuclear explosions) and a glowing halo.

Glossary Open

Cold War

The Cold War was an era of intense rivalry, tension and conflict (short of a full-scale war) between the United States of America and the Soviet Union (U.S.S.R.). It emerged in the 1940s following World War II and lasted until the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. With both superpowers engaged in military coalitions and an arms race, the threat of nuclear warfare was ever present.

Diptych

An artwork consisting of two components, often joined in the centre by a hinge.

Graphic

Art forms, usually on paper, where the emphasis is on expression through line, mark-making or lettering rather than colour. This includes drawing, printmaking and typography.

Icon

A devotional image, usually depicting Christ, the Virgin Mary or a saint, traditionally associated with the Byzantine, Greek and Roman Orthodox Churches. By extension, it is used to denote an important and enduring symbol.

Screenprint

A print made by forcing ink through a screen on which a stencil is placed. Traditionally used for commercial printing, it has been taken up by artists since the 1960s when it was used extensively in Pop art.

Cold War, Diptych, Graphic, Icon, Screenprint

Details

  • Acc. No. AR00233
  • Medium Acrylic paint and silkscreen on 2 canvases
  • Size 183.20 x 203.70 x 3.30 cm
  • Credit ARTIST ROOMS National Galleries of Scotland and Tate. Acquired jointly through The d'Offay Donation with assistance from the National Heritage Memorial Fund and the Art Fund 2008