Portrait of subject.
Not embossed with ANDY WARHOL
2009 Curatorial Fellowship Exhibition Label: The Minox and the Big Shot
In 1971, Andy Warhol purchased the Polaroid Big Shot camera. The Big Shot was specifically designed for portraiture. It had a fixed focal distance of a few feet, a limitation that suited the standardized nature of Warhol’s work. Warhol cropped his sitters just below their shoulders, and posed them against a blank studio wall. Portrait sessions with the Big Shot typically lasted for hours and resulted in the accumulation of dozens of Polaroids for the artist to choose from for the eventual production of a commissioned silkscreen portrait. Thus, the instant portrait offered by the Big Shot morphed into a protracted event, more akin to a traditional portrait session. The accumulation of images reveals minute changes in expression, pose, and personality. The resultant sequence, this sum of instances, perhaps amplifies the sitter more effectively than the silkscreen itself.
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