In 1962, Andy Warhol began appropriating images of violent death from the pages of America’s newspapers and silk-screening them as the subjects of a series he called Death & Disaster. He made these deaths famous, but he also had an insight: that Americans had become inured to the horror of these images by their constant repetition in the news. He also knew that America had an insatiable lust for celebrity, violence & death.
I was moved by these images, yet in a new century where we are even further over-saturated with imagery. My reaction was to re-create the original black & white photographs as miniature dioramas and photograph them in full color, taking a few liberties. They have been produced on film for viewing as a Viewmaster reel, and designed for the Bakelite Viewmasters whose mass- production started in 1962, the same year that Warhol began his own series. In his honor, I call this series A Glamorous Death, and the images are titled with their original news headlines.
HINDENBURG BLAST KILLS 35!
SPIES DIE IN CHAIR!
129 DIE IN JET!
MOB BOSS SLAIN!
EMPIRE STATE BUILDING SUICIDE!
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