The Netflix streaming platform released on March 9 its mini-series (6 episodes) which takes up Andy Warhol’s diaries edited by Pat Hackett, in whom he confided every day for 10 years. This documentary is overflowing with archival footage and uses for voice-over, the reconstituted voice of the “King of Pop Art” thanks to an artificial intelligence, special effect that gives the impression that Warhol is confiding directly to us.
This plunge into intimacy allows us to reread the works of Warhol and to discover a hidden side of the artist: his sentimental and sexual life, he who said he was asexual and threw doubt on his preferences. If these diaries have been published a long time ago (in 1989), Warhol said certain things in half-words, but the revelation of images of this intimate life having recently been found, these words take on a whole new dimension.
Thus, we learn how a child of immigrants, from a very modest and pious family, crippled with complexes, managed to extract himself from a social environment to break into the very closed world of contemporary art and become in a few years, the reference artist of his time, millionaire and trendsetter, even becoming a model.
He revolutionizes the very closed and elitist milieu of art by creating “pop” works that are part of popular culture and use techniques hitherto confined to the press, advertising and various displays for the public, which are photography, photocopies, printing, video and all these mechanical reproduction methods allowing wide and international distribution on a very large scale.
This documentary also lifts the veil on his great loves, Jed Johnson and Jon Gould, and the suffering inflicted by the bullet wounds made on June 3, 1968 by Valerie Solanas in front of the Factory.
It also allows us to return to his troubled relationship with Jean-Michel Basquiat, broken by the sharp criticism of so-called art specialists who saw in Basquiat only the new “mascot” of Warhol.
And, if the truth is specific to each person’s point of view, this documentary invites us to touch that of Andy Warhol.