cover image Becoming Andy Warhol

Becoming Andy Warhol

Nick Bertozzi and Pierce Hargan. Abrams ComicArts, $24.95 (160p) ISBN 978-1-4197-1875-5

Soup cans and Marilyn Monroe prints appear prominently in this history of the iconic artist, but it’s Warhol himself who is portrayed as the work in progress. In a series of sharp, staccato chapters, the book packs substantial vigor into a swift narrative, following Warhol’s two-year journey from commercial illustrator to art-world icon. Bertozzi’s (Shackleton: Antarctic Odyssey) introduction admits that liberties have been taken with history, events, and timing, but his script and dialogue ring true to the Warhol we like to imagine: an artist comfortable with facts evolving into legend. Without slavishly aping Warhol’s style, newcomer Hargan creates bold visuals for movement, anxiety, and verve. Even pages filled with talking heads are energetic, the line art highlighted with shades of purple. A sleek, arresting front cover sporting Ben-Day dots and a shiny chrome finish (mirroring the color scheme of Warhol’s Factory) enhance this illuminating portrait of the grit and glamour of Warhol’s pill-fueled origin years. (Oct.)