American Masters: Andy Warhol: A Documentary Film (PBS)
Whatever swirled about and around Andy Warhol—design, art, music, drugs, sex, film, fame, celebrity—was surely matched by whatever swirled within. This first major documentary on Warhol chronicles his life from the cliches of “humble beginnings” to the height of his role as one of the most famous artists of the late 20th Century. In the course of that account, we are presented with a host of influences and experiences. We hear from confidantes and companions. We listen to experts in art and culture, some of whom find Warhol’s art wanting, his fame puzzling. And through it all, we see the familiar complexion, pale and pocked, the minimal physical movement, the blank stare. What lasts is the art itself, inextricable from the man, the experiences, the expression, the performances, the life. The art remains to be argued over, praised or dismissed, and the camera captures it here—large, shimmering at times, in repetitive glory. Andy Warhol: A Documentary Film takes us as close to the core of the man as we may ever get, and for this receives a Peabody Award.
Executive producers: Peter Brant, Larry Gagosian, Diane Von Furstenberg, Susan Lacy. Producers: Donald Rosenfeld, Daniel Wolf, Ric Burns, Mary Recine. Director: Ric Burns. Writers: James Sanders, Ric Burns. Cinematographers: Buddy Squires, Peter Nelson, Allen Moore, Michael Chin.