10 Things You Definitely Didn’t Know About Andy Warhol

Bold. Flashy. Eccentric. That’s three words to describe the cult legend of Andy Warhol. The father figure of pop art is famous for capturing humanity’s obsession with celebrity culture and advertising in his experimental film, painting and sculpture.

But like his art, the flashy, grey-haired provocateur had a complex backstory behind his eccentric lifestyle. In fact, his life is full of intriguing anecdotes and unusual quirks. Did you know these 10 facts about Andy Warhol?

1. He was a devote Catholic…

Although we associated Warhol with his provocative art and subversive entourage, he grew up as a practicing Ruthenian Catholic. His parents immigrated to the US from Slovakia and brought their religious beliefs with them. As an adult, the famous artist continued to practice his religion, attending mass at Manhattan’s Upper East Side most days.

The iconic painter wore a crucifix necklace, carried a rosary and was a regular volunteer at the church-lead soup kitchen in his neighbourhood.

andy warhol facts

Warhol posing in front of a print of The Last Supper Source: Giorgio Lott i| Archivio Giorgio Lotti

2. …And a mummy’s boy

Julia Warhola was her son’s closest companion. They lived and worked together for almost two decades and the artist’s mother even appeared in his film Mrs. Warhol.

She also helped him out by providing lettering for many of his projects. Warhol’s father, Andrej, died when the artist was just 13 years old.

andy warhol facts

Julia Warhola by Andy Warhol, 1974

3. He moonlighted as the Velvet Underground’s band manager

The American rock band fronted by Lou Reed and famous for being one of the most influential groups on rock, underground and experimental music were briefly managed by Warhol.

In 1965, after being introduced to the band, Warhol became their manager. He hlped the band secure a recording contract with MGM’s Verve Records and acted as a producer.

During this career diversion, Warhol included the Velvet Underground is his multimedia roadshow Exploding plastic Inevitable, which combined Warhol’s films with the band’s music.

4. He wore wigs to cover up a balding scalp

Warhol began to go bald in his early 20s and took to wearing wigs to obscure his hair loss. His silver wigs became iconic, contributing to his image as a mad-hat artist and provocateur.

One of his most famous pieces, a series of self-portraits called Fright Wig, utilised his fake hair to create a now legendary image.

5. He once published a cookbook

Wild Raspberries, created by the artist and his friend Suzie Frankfurt, was a parody of pretentious French-style cook books. Published in 1959, the book included 19 illustrations and a number of recipes mocking traditional haute cuisine.

Dishes included Omelet Greta Garbo (‘to be eaten alone’) and Roast Iguana Andalusian.

 6. He designed an album cover that was nominated for a Grammy Award

Warhol worked as a freelance commercial artist for companies including Harper’s Bazaar, Vogue, The New Yorker and Columbia Records in the 1950s and 1960s.

He created cover art for a number of iconic bands and performers including the Rolling Stones and Aretha Franklin. The 1971 cover for the Rolling Stone’s Sticky Fingers album was nominated for a Grammy Award for best Album Cover.

He didn’t win though – the accolade went to a band called Pollution.

7. He trained as a classical artist

It’s hard to believe that the iconic and subversive artist ever created anything we could define as ‘traditional art’, but Warhol actually studied at the Carnegie Institute for Technology where he graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in 1949.

During his student years, he faced some opposition from professors who didn’t wholly approve of his unique approach and he sometimes had to do additional coursework over the summer to retain a good academic standing.

After a world trip, in which he travelled to places such as Japan, India, Italy and Egypt, he began to visualise ambitions beyond commercial art and moved towards what we now would call ‘Warhol’ style work.

8. He collected taxidermy

The artist owned a number of stuffed animals, including a lion, a peacock, a penguin, a moose’s head and a Great Dane, called Cecil. Warhol bought the dog for $300 in the late 60s, and the stuffed canine stood guard outside his studio from 1969 to 1987.

The iconic artist had a soft spot for dogs – he also owned a (live) dachshund called Archie and often spent time in the company of fellow artist and actress Brigid Berlin’s pugs.

andy warhol facts

Andy Warhol and his dog, Archie. Source: Wiki Commons | Jack Mitchell

9. Someone once tried to kill him

On June 3, 1968 a radical feminist called Valeria Jean Solanas entered Warhol’s workspace, the Factory, and shot him.

She had previously been in one of Warhol’s films, I, A Man and, due to poor mental health, grew paranoid about her work and who she had been working with.

After the attack, Valeria handed herself in and was treated for paranoid Schizophrenia. Warhol suffered from damage to his lungs, oesophagus, spleen, liver and stomach but recovered after an extended stay in a New York hospital. He had to wear a surgical corset for the rest of his life.

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Valeria Jean Solanas (middle) shot Warhol with the intent to kill him

10. You can stay in an Andy Warhol-inspired hotel suite…

At the Arthouse Hotel, we’ve been inspired by the artistic efforts of Warhol to create interiors that replicate his eccentric designs. Some of our most popular suites celebrate his iconic artwork.

From the opulent Marilyn Monroe suite, to the seductive Lips, you can enjoy the visual artistry of Warhol’s most famous pieces while indulging in the luxurious amenities on offer. Whether you’re a Chelsea Girl or looking for your 15 minutes of fame, we’ve got the perfect room for your stay.

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The Lips Room is inspired by one of Warhol’s most simple artworks

Sleeping up to six guests, all our Warhol suites come equipped with ultra-comfortable beds, large flat-screen TV and a Bluetooth multimedia sound system. They’ve also all got opulent bathrooms with double whirlpool baths and waterfall showers.

Arthouse Hotel is ideally located, giving guests access to the best nightlife, shopping and dining venues in the city, guaranteeing a visit to Liverpool you’ll never forget.

To book, call our team on 0151 395 7900.

 

Our Biggest Ever Giveaway: Celebrating 10 Years of Signature Living

When Signature Living opened the Arthouse Hotel in late 2016, the Signature brand was only just getting started.

But now, the Hollywood-themed hotel is part of a country-wide hospitality empire that started right here in Liverpool.

Growing from just four serviced apartments with a personalized touch in Liverpool’s city centre to a national hotelier, Signature Living has had 10 years of wild dreams and spectacular launches.

We’ve taken on near-impossible restoration projects, preserved iconic hero’s legacies  and hosted magical weddings in breathtaking venues, while also ensuring that the party-lovers of Liverpool continue to enjoy jaw-dropping, unique venues at the heart of the city.

Safe to say, it’s been a spectacular few years. And after a decade of success, we’re pleased to announce that we’re celebrating with our #biggestevergiveaway…

Two Years of The Arthouse Hotel

Building on our previous success with party accommodation in the city, the movie-themed party pads at Arthouse gave a brand new, star-studded side to Signature’s Liverpool venues.

After the glamourous, celebrity-filled launch of the Arthouse bar (now Mulholland) which introduced Seel Street to a Signature night out, the hotel opened its doors and offered luxurious, film-themed party suites to the city’s most glamorous girl squads and party-loving man packs.

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The Wizard of Oz room at Arthouse Hotel

Whether you want to follow the yellow brick road to our Wizard of Oz room, or have a night of Rock Horror Show drama, our themed suites offer luxurious accommodation with incredible faculties including spa baths and ultra-comfortable beds.

And with the opening of our stunning Skyline Suites in 2017, the Arthouse had its own penthouse party pad, offering accommodation for groups of up to 12 and giving them exclusive access to an in-room roman bath for the ultimate pool parties looking out over Liverpool’s beautiful skyline.

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One of our Skyline Suites, at Arthouse Hotel

In only two short year, the Arthouse has become some of Liverpool’s most popular party accommodation. With our take-over of Alma de Cuba in December 2016, we cemented ourselves as the leading night-life influence on Liverpool’s Seel Street.

It’s been a wild ride. And after 10 years of Signature success we want to give you, our followers, a giveaway like no other to celebrate #Signature10 and the excitement of the last decade…

Celebrating 10 Years of Signature Living

Growing from four serviced apartments for Liverpool’s most dedicated party lovers into a national hospitality provider, Signature Living’s founders Katie and Lawrence Kenwright have realized their wildest dreams in the past 10 years.

And on the 10th anniversary of the company, the generous pair want to make your hopes and dreams a reality too.

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Katie and Lawrence Kenwright

As we begin our official birthday celebrations on the 14th August, we’ll be launching Signature Living’s biggest giveaway yet. Each month for 12 months, a life-changing prize will be announced on social media – prizes that will make a real difference and change your life forever!

Katie and Lawrence want to give back to you, our Signature followers, with once-in-a-lifetime opportunities and spectacular experiences.

From planting the seeds of change, to indulging in thrills like no other, all the prizes have a definite Signature touch, celebrating our ten years of unique hospitality service.

Get ready to be revved up by our unbelievable giveaway that includes sizzling-hot surprises, ice-cool adventures and sparkling Signature celebrations.

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Dive into our biggest competition yet, as we jet off into 12 months of jam-packed festivities for our 10year anniversary carnival.

You’ve been here for our biggest moments, so now we want to make your special occasions as successful and spectacular as our own.

Keep tuned into our social media, where we will be announcing our biggest giveaway yet (#biggestevergiveaway) every month! For more information on our amazing prizes, check out biggestevergiveaway.co.uk. We can’t wait to celebrate with you.

Follow our Facebook Page, Twitter and Instagram for updates.