Andy Warhol is Taking Over the Western Suburbs and It’s Amazing

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We had the pleasure of attending the opening of the multi-faceted exhibit Andy Warhol Portfolios: A Life in Pop at the Cleve Carney Museum of Art (CCMA) and the McAninch Arts Center (MAC) on the College of DuPage (COD) campus. It includes an impressive collection of the iconic artist’s work and welcomes children with family-friendly activities.

Experience Andy Warhol’s life through interactive exhibits, recreations, and videos created exclusively for this exhibition including a historical exhibit, Kids Pop Art Print Factory, Studio 54 Experience, Central Park-inspired outdoor area and Silver Clouds installation June 3 through September 10, 2023.

Who was Andy Warhol?

Andy Warhol (American, 1928–1987) was a central figure in the Pop Art movement that emerged in the U.S. in the early 1950s and is the most recognizable artist of the second half of the twentieth century. Warhol worked across media, including painting, sculpture, film and printmaking. Warhol’s printed multiples were central to his practice allowing him to explore the aesthetics and mechanics of mass-produced images and popular culture. Through these prints, Warhol exhibited his mastery at identifying the defining cultural images of his time.

It is truly an honor to have the opportunity to present work by an artist who embodies so much of the American dream. He captured American culture, iconography and society in such a relatable way.

Diana Martinez, MAC Director

What do we love about this exhibit for kids?

The family-friendly area! It features:

  • Warhol-inspired artmaking activities: a “Souper Pop Art” project for kids to design their own soup cans on illustrated worksheets, and a “Prints or Portraits” project for kids to stamp replicated images on four squares, like Warhol’s portraits 
  • A recreation of Warhol’s “Paintings for Children” art show with artwork hung at eye-level for youngsters to view, Warhol-designed wallpaper of silver fish, and includes posters of “The Toy Series” silkscreens by Warhol 
  • An animated video adaptation of best-selling children’s book “Getting to Know Andy Warhol” 
  • Vinyl recreations of artwork and illustrations and an animated video based on award-winning children’s book author Mike Venezia

We especially like that prints were hung low on the wall so kids can easily enjoy the artwork near the kids area without having to pick them up. The video is entertaining and informative… Did you know that Andy Warhol had an art show for kids in 1985 with paintings hung low on the wall just like they did in Glen Ellyn? He clearly wanted to involve kids and peak their interest in art, which is so great.

McAninch Arts Center ensures a safe and family-friendly environment for visitors. The exhibit is thoughtfully designed to accommodate strollers, and there are dedicated rest areas for families. Friendly staff members are readily available to answer questions and provide assistance, ensuring that families have a pleasant and stress-free experience.

Exposing children to renowned artists like Andy Warhol can ignite their creativity and inspire them to pursue their own artistic endeavors. By introducing young minds to Warhol’s unique perspective, the exhibit encourages imagination and offers an opportunity for children to explore their own artistic potential.

Andy Warhol’s work and celebrity redefined what it meant to be an artist and created a model that is still followed by artists today. In many ways we are still living in Warhol’s world.

Justin Witte, CCMA Curator

Warhol Exhibit Tickets

WARHOL featuring “Andy Warhol Portfolios: A Life in Pop | Works from the Bank of America Collection” is on display June 3 – Sept. 10, 2023 at the Cleve Carney Museum of Art, 425 Fawell Blvd. Ticket prices range $25 – $40. Add-ons and VIP packages are available.

All programming in conjunction with The WARHOL Exhibition are free to attend with proof of a ticket purchase to the exhibition. Tickets for the lectures without exhibition admittance are $10 and tickets to the Wine and Print Like Andy Warhol Workshop are $50. Reservations for free events are recommended.

Tickets to the exhibition and related programming may be purchased online at or by calling 630.942.4000.

How is the Warhol exhibit different from other art exhibits?

Andy Warhol Portfolios: A Life in Pop is a diverse collection of Warhol’s most famous pieces, including his pop art masterpieces, celebrity portraits, and experimental films. From Marilyn Monroe to Campbell’s soup cans, visitors will have the chance to immerse themselves in the vibrant and eclectic world of Warhol’s artistic expression.

Pop Art and Iconic Imagery

Andy Warhol is synonymous with the pop art movement, which emerged in the 1950s and 1960s. His works epitomize the use of popular culture imagery, such as Campbell’s soup cans, Coca-Cola bottles, Marilyn Monroe, and Elvis Presley. The Warhol exhibit at The MAC highlights these iconic images and explores their significance in contemporary art history.

Mass Production and Repetition

Warhol’s fascination with mass production and repetition is a notable aspect of his work. He used techniques like screen printing to create multiple versions of the same image, often employing vibrant colors and bold compositions. A Warhol exhibit showcases the power of repetition and challenges traditional notions of uniqueness and authenticity in art.

Commentary on Consumerism and Society

Warhol’s art often delves into the themes of consumerism, capitalism, and the commodification of art. Through his works, he provokes contemplation on the impact of mass culture and consumer society. A Warhol exhibit provides a platform to engage in discussions surrounding these concepts and their relevance in today’s world.

Studio 54 Experience

The Belushi Theater is filled with lights, music, and clothing from Studio 54! It takes you back in time to another world and immerses you in Andy Warhol’s heyday. “Hot Stuff” by Donna Summer was playing when we walked in.

Central Park-inspired Outdoor Café

Grab a Warhol-themed drink or snack at the café and enjoy it in Central Park, I mean outside. Fun fact: The same artist that designed the lamp posts in Central Park was commissioned to design the lamp posts for the outdoor café in Glen Ellyn!

Silver Clouds

Don’t miss the silver foil balloons floating on the second floor! These sculptures hover and flow around the room, making it an interactive experience and great spot to take photos.

As it states outside the room, “Warhol was criticized as an artist who could “only paint” by Donald Judd, a sculptor known for his rigid stacks of rectangles fixed to gallery walls. In a cheeky act of one-up-manship, Warhol created these beautiful, floating silver sculptures that are not only three-dimensional, but also mobile and interactive.”

Other Local Events Celebrating Andy Warhol

Towns across DuPage County are celebrating Warhol with various events, classes, camps, and scavenger hunts.

Where’s Warhol Scavenger Hunt
June 3 – September 10, 2023
Join the search party and find different versions of Andy Warhol inside your favorite Downtown Wheaton shops. Put your seeking skills to the test and enjoy the rest with this free, family-friendly activity. Visit local restaurants and businesses along the way to check out some limited-time, Warhol-themed items.

Many towns have chosen notable members of their community and turned them into a Warhol-inspired mural! Is your town on the list?

  • Addison
  • Aurora
  • Barlett
  • Bloomingdale
  • Carol Stream
  • Glen Ellyn
  • Gendale Heights
  • Lisle
  • Lombard
  • Naperville
  • Roselle
  • Warrenville
  • West Chicago
  • Westmont
  • Wheaton
  • Winfield
  • Woodridge

Click here for all the details on these local murals.

Past Exhibits at McAninch Arts Center

Go to the next page to read about past exhibits at the MAC.

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