Shimmering Andy Warhol Statue Unveiled in Union Square

Wednesday, March 30, 2011


Move over Mahatma Gandhi, George Washington and Abe Lincoln — there’s a new statue in the Union Square area: artist and pop culture icon Andy Warhol.

The chrome statue of Warhol dubbed The Andy Monument was unveiled Wednesday outside his old studio, known as The Factory, on 17th Street and Broadway where it will be on display for six months.

"It's awesome I think!" Kathy Farnell of Buffalo, New York, said as she gazed at the shiny new addition to Union Square. "I like how it's all silvery because he [was] sort of one of those Hollywood type people anyway and loved the silver screen."

It was commissioned by the Public Art Fund and created by artist Rob Pruitt, who said he was inspired to make the sculpture shiny as an homage to the silver foil wallpaper in Warhol's original Factory.

The 10-foot statue of Warhol is circa the late 1970s, and he is sporting a tweed jacket and Levis with a Polaroid camera hanging around his neck and his iconic mop-like wig.

Painter Robert Saaf said he thinks the statue is in an ideal location.

“Warhol's studio was here obviously and there are a lot of artist studios all along Union Square," he said. "I've had one here for seven years. I think it’s exciting that they’re acknowledging that."

Saaf said he's planning an open studios event in May to correspond with the exhibit of the statue.

Fellow Manhattanite Romy Ashby, who wandered over to the statue with a handful of vegetables from the farmers market to sneak a peek, said she remembers seeing Warhol around town when he was alive.

"I think it’s great to have a statue of Andy. I’m surprised there isn’t one already," she said.


More in:

Comments [6]

Howard from NYC

I saw Warhol periodically on the streets of NY. He was a fast-paced jittery guy in jeans, not haggard and weighed down by a shopping bag, shoulders drooped.
At least never when I saw him.
Especially strange to see this body language on a sculpted youthful face.

May. 22 2011 11:09 AM
AJ from NYC

Poor Andy, installed as an obstruction to reinforce the blockage of the thoroughfare. How delighted Bloomberg must be that Andy now becomes the silver poster child for congestion pricing. Did Warhol like that much direct sunlight? Hmm, I don't think so!

Mar. 31 2011 04:57 PM
Cory Warren from San Francisco

Hoping to pay a visit in the next few months to see this up close. It must be hard for photographs to do the chrome surface justice.

Mar. 31 2011 02:26 PM
E. Sedgwick from Chelsea

He would have cringed at the corniness!
It should have been a giant Brillo pad.

Mar. 31 2011 12:36 PM
Alex Khost from Union Square, NYC

It's wonderful to see some recognition of the rich historical background the art world has played in Union Square! It is in the spirit of artists like Andy Warhol that the Union Square Artist's Meetup organization ( was started, which is holding the May open studios event mentioned in this article.

Mar. 31 2011 11:06 AM
Wally Balloo from Mohegan Lake, NY

I wonder what it will look like in 10-20 years.

Mar. 31 2011 08:57 AM

Leave a Comment

Email addresses are required but never displayed.

Get the WNYC Morning Brief in your inbox.
We'll send you our top 5 stories every day, plus breaking news and weather.


Latest Newscast




WNYC is supported by the Charles H. Revson Foundation: Because a great city needs an informed and engaged public


Supported by