It’s Andy Warhol’s Birthday—So Here’s a Selfie of His Escape from Death

THE DAILY PIC: A new book of Polaroids, including new photos of his wounds.

THE DAILY PIC (#1368): Today is Andy Warhol’s birthday, so I thought I’d celebrate his birth, in 1928, with some new pictures of his (near) death, 40 years later, at the hands of Valerie Solanas.

These four 1969 selfies of the post-shooting artist come from a fat new book of Warhol Polaroids that Taschen is releasing in a few weeks, in collaboration with the Andy Warhol Foundation. I think a gruesome, death-aware birthday shot would have suited and pleased Warhol, who had a morbid side that he mostly hid.

For a little while now, I’ve been working out the details of the ’68 shooting with Seattle surgeon and medical historian John Ryan. We’ve found lots of amazing facts … which we’ll be shouting from the rooftops at some later date. Thanks to Ryan, I’ve pretty much learned which surgical procedure produced each of those Frankenstein scars.

For now, I’ll just say that, given the extent of his wounds, the artist’s survival was yet another example of the uncanny luck of the Warhols. Medically speaking, at least, he was in the right place at the right time – if one can say such a thing about a guy who had only been shot at all because the killer’s preferred target wasn’t home. (©The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc.)

For a full visual survey of past Daily Pics visit

Follow Artnet News on Facebook:

Want to stay ahead of the art world? Subscribe to our newsletter to get the breaking news, eye-opening interviews, and incisive critical takes that drive the conversation forward.
Article topics
Subscribe or log in to read the rest of this content.

You are currently logged into this Artnet News Pro account on another device. Please log off from any other devices, and then reload this page continue. To find out if you are eligible for an Artnet News Pro group subscription, please contact [email protected]. Standard subscriptions can be purchased on the subscription page.

Log In