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ARTH 44 — Icon and Enigma: The Art of Andy Warhol

Quarter: Spring
Day(s): Mondays
Course Format: On-campus
Duration: 4 weeks
Date(s): May 6—Jun 3
Time: 7:00—8:50 pm
Drop Deadline: May 12
Unit: 0
Grade Restriction: NGR only; no credit/letter grade
Tuition: $280
Instructor(s): Kevin Muller
Status: Open
Please Note: No class on May 27
7:00—8:50 pm
May 6—Jun 3
4 weeks
Drop By
May 12
0 Unit
Grade Restriction
NGR only; no credit/letter grade
Kevin Muller
Please Note: No class on May 27
Over the course of a decades-long career, Andy Warhol produced a unique body of work that represented—and at the same time commented on—the complexities and contradictions of American culture. Taking as his subject icons of consumer and celebrity culture, from Campbell’s soup to Marilyn Monroe and beyond, he fashioned images that ultimately generate more questions than answers. At once humorous and ironic, as well as deadpan and playful, Warhol’s art provokes viewers to consider their own complicity in the very culture he represents. This course is offered in conjunction with the exhibition “Andy Warhol—From A to B and Back Again,” opening on May 18 at SFMOMA. Iconic artworks on view will form the foundation of the course, which will be organized chronologically and thematically. In tracing the trajectory of Warhol’s career, from his days as a fledgling art student all the way to art world celebrity, we will explore how Warhol returned continuously to the same topics and imagery through different media at different points in his career. Repetition became a defining facet of his output, allowing him to offer timely, insightful, and ever-evolving mirrors of American culture. At the end of the course, an optional field trip to SFMOMA will offer students the opportunity to apply insights gained in the classroom to the actual works on view.

This course includes an optional field trip to SFMOMA free of charge. The date will be announced at the first class session. Transportation will be the responsibility of the student.

Kevin Muller, Art Historian, College of Marin

Kevin Muller is a specialist in the history of American art. He has lectured on the collections at the de Young, Crocker, and Oakland museums. He has received fellowships from the American Antiquarian Society, the Smithsonian Institution, and The Huntington Library. His publications span three centuries of American art. He received a PhD from UC Berkeley.

Textbooks for this course:

There are no required textbooks; however, some fee-based online readings may be assigned.