Published March 24, 2011
Andy Warhol’s legacy in New York City is so mammoth that the Savant of Pop deserves a monument the size of the Empire State Building. In reality, very little of Warhol and his silvery, celebrity-studded, bohemian phantasmagoria remains. The city has never been very precious with its artists, but neo-pop master Rob Pruitt is looking to amend that. On March 30, with the help of the Public Art Fund, Pruitt was set to unveil Andy Monument, a seven-foot-tall fiberglass statue, plated in chrome, of Warhol with his signature wig, a Polaroid camera, and a brown shopping bag, in which he often carried copies of Interview magazine to pass out on the street. Until October this larger-than-life artist will take up residence on the northwest corner of Union Square, just outside the location of Warhol’s second-to-last Factory (now a Petco). Pruitt sees the statue as a lightning rod in the same vein as Jim Morrison’s grave in Paris’s Père-Lachaise. “I think there needs to be something in the streets of New York,” Pruitt says, “something you could visit at 4:30 in the morning.” Warhol is in good company. The Gandhi statue still stands in the southwest corner of the park. Those two would have made for a great interview together.