TIFTON — Art lovers in south Georgia who want to get an upclose look at the work of Andy Warhol expect to have to travel to a major city for the experience.
That changes Sunday when Tifton Museum of Arts and Heritage will host a showing of 36 prints from the collection of Wesley and Missy Cochran.
Warhol is considered one of the most important and influential artists of the 20th century and the leading figure in the visual art movement known as Pop Art. Perhaps his best known work is his representation of a soup can.
Warhol was a commercial illustrator before becoming a famous and controversial artist.
The show will open Sunday at 1 p.m. through 4 p.m. The exhibition will continue through Friday, Sept. 14.
Andy Warhol: The Cochran Collection comprises 36 iconic screen prints created from 1974 to 1986, the year before Warhol’s death. Featuring images from several of the artist’s most important series, the collection is notable for two suites of prints. The first is the “Myth Series” containing subjects from the stories, myths, and legends that fascinated Warhol later in his career, such as the Wicked Witch, Dracula, Superman, Mickey Mouse and Santa Claus, among others.
The second series is one of his last projects: The “Cowboys and Indians Series,” which shows the artist’s fascination with the mythology of the American West. Among these images are the Apache chief Geronimo, General Custer, Teddy Roosevelt, Annie Oakley, John Wayne and Sitting Bull.
Other selections in the exhibit include two prints from the “Flash-November 22, 1963 Series,” a reference to the assassination of President John F Kennedy and prints of other 60s icons.
LaGrange residents Wes and Missy Cochran have been assembling their art for the last three decades. In the 1970’s when Wes was working offshore on an oil rig, he started sending part of his paycheck to his uncle, an art collector and broker. Later, as a stone mason, he and Missy continued investing. Their complete collection is considered one of the finest private collections in the United States.
Jeannie Rigdon, Museum board president, commented that the Warhol exhibit is the most prestigious ever presented by the organization. “We are proud to host this remarkable collection and grateful to the owners for making it possible for small venues like ours to show the work of such an important American artist.”
The Museum will hold a preview reception for patrons on Saturday before the Sunday public opening.
The Museum is located at 255 Love Ave. in downtown Tifton. Admission is $3 for adults, children free, ABAC students free with student I.D.
Hours are Sunday 1-4 p.m., Tuesday - Thursday 11 a.m. - 7 p.m., Friday 11 a.m. - 5 p.m. For information, contact Rigdon, 382-5083, or Syd Blackmarr, exhibits chair, 229-388-1090, 387-5657. On the web, tiftonmuseum.org