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In fall, museum plans big Pop: All of BofA's Warhol portfolios

For its big fall show, the Mint Museum of Art reached back to the '60s when the Pop movement rocked the art world and Andy Warhol in his trademark white wig became the leader of the pack.

“Andy Warhol Portfolios: Life & Legends,” opening at the Randolph Road facility in October, is filled with well-known works, images of Campbell soup cans and Marilyn Monroe. Charles Mo, chief curator, chose the show for Warhol's appeal, although the artist, who died at age 58 in 1987, remains somewhat controversial.

“Some people just dismiss him – ‘He was a showman who thrived on celebrity, he was too avant-garde for some,'” said Mo. “But when people begin to look at what he created and brought about, they're colorful and strong compositions.”

The more than 60 works come from the Bank of America collection, put together under a new program where the bank curates exhibits for museums, paying the cost of packing, shipping and insuring the art. It is the first time the bank's Warhol portfolios will be exhibited together. The show likely will visit other cities.

Included are silkscreen prints from series such as “Muhammad Ali,” “Endangered Species,” “Flowers,” “Jewish Heroes,” “Myths” and “Space Fruits.”

Mo said he made a point of adding the Monroe and Campbell soup works because they are “iconic images the public would expect to see.” Also in the show: “Andy Mouse,” a send-up of Warhol by an artist associated with him, the late Keith Haring, and a photo of Warhol by the late Robert Mapplethorpe.

The Mint, 2730 Randolph Road, plans to surround the exhibit with programs. On Oct. 5, Tom Sokolowski, director of the Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh, will speak. On Jan 12, 19 and 25, the Mint will show Ric Burns' “Andy Warhol: A Documentary Film.”

The exhibit runs from Oct. 4 to Feb. 15. 704-337-2000; www.themintmuseums.org.

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