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Events Planned for 20th Anniversary of the Andy Warhol Museum

The Andy Warhol Museum will be honoring its 20th anniversary in May with renovations, parties and a few surprises.

Among the changes to come will be a shuffling of the collection so that for the first time the museum will be presented in chronological order to take visitors through the life of Andy Warhol.  

The museum has become much more to the community than when it first opened it’s doors. “For many Pittsburghers it was as though an alien spaceship had landed in our mists. And how on earth could this weird strange gay artist from New York have a museum here in Pittsburgh, but over those 20 years I’ve seen the mindset shift 180 degrees and I think that all Pittsburghers take great pride in the fact that we are here,” said Eric Shiner Director of the Andy Warhol Museum.

The lobby was made more inviting by tearing down walls, installing more windows, and by moving the store out in the open. Visitors will also be greeted with a biopic film about Andy Warhol.

In addition, the museum will open Halston and Warhol: Silver and Suede, a reinstallation of The Warhol’s permanent collection. This collection will feature one of Jackie Kennedy’s pillbox hats that Halston designed, 45 other garments, and some original Warhol paintings from Halston’s private collection.

An Exploding Plastic Inevitable (EPI) room will be built like the one that Warhol took on tour around the country in the 60’s. It will be a light, sound, and film projection "spectacular" according to Shiner, to which visitors will be able to dance.

“Not only are we keeping Warhol’s legacy alive, but we’re pushing boundaries in contemporary art, we’re giving a voice to those that don’t have it… we have far exceeded the goals of what this museum was meant to be,” said Shiner.

In September the museum will honor the work of contemporary painter Chuck Connelly who is from Pittsburgh and now continues his work in Philadelphia. Also in the fall, the museum will feature a new exhibit Most Wanted Men celebrating the 50th anniversary of a collection of Warhol’s paintings, which made its debut at the 1964 World’s Fair in Queens.

Currently the museum is closing floor by floor to prepare for the changes. The anniversary officially kicks off on with a gala event on May 17th at which the museum will unveil all of its renovations and new exhibits.

Jess was accepted as a WESA fellow in the news department in January 2014. The Erie, PA native attends Duquesne University where she has a double major--broadcast journalism and political science. Following her anticipated graduation in May 2015, she plans to enter law school or begin a career in broadcast journalism.