Skip to main content
Foto: Ty Stange


22.2.2013 - 9.6.2013

Louisiana’s large-scale spring exhibition celebrates the phenomenal Pop Art movement. Featuring many iconic masterpieces - Warhol, Lichtenstein, Hamilton, Eames, Panton and Sottsass - Pop Art Design highlights the close and inspirational collaboration between artists and designers of the period.

Pop stands out as the most influential, fascinating and easily recognizable movement of the post-war years. Young, wild, witty, bold, colourful and sexy, Pop literally exploded onto the art and design scene in the late 50s and early 60s, marking a fundamental break-through in values, motives and aesthetics. 

With its new, fresh appeal and provocative use and re-interpretation of everyday objects and wellknown imagery, Pop reached out to far more people than art and design had ever done before. Profoundly changing our viewpoints and perception of the world.

The years 1955-1972 were marked by optimism and a boom in consumer culture and creative outpour in both USA and Europe, influenced by mass production, new materials, new technology, media and advertising. The dialogue between artists and designers flourished, breaking down boundaries and resulting in cross-fertilizations between the genres.

Pop Art Design is in fact the first extensive exhibition on the interrelations between art and design of the period. Here we are presented with a more varied and exciting perspective of the Pop phenomenon, finally recognizing the central role of design in the history of the movement.

Divided into a number of visually striking themes, the exhibition mixes works of art and design and showcases the many different expressions and forms of Pop. Some 180 works are featured in all, many of them icons and classics by the most important players from both fields: Warhol, Rauschenberg, Hamilton, Oldenburg and Lichtenstein as well as designers like Eames, Panton, Castiglioni and Sottsass.

Pop Art Design is an exhibition of the Vitra Design Museum, Louisiana Museum of Modern Art and Moderna Museet, Stockholm.
The exhibition was supported by C.L. Davids Fond og Samling

Works by Andy Warhol © The Andy Warhol Foundation for The Visual Arts, Inc./ 2013

A thematic exhibition

Pop Art Design is a thematic exhibition with more than twenty specific approaches to the phenomenon of Pop: The Image Duplicator; Reality as Collage; From Folk Art to Pop; Image, Object and Sign; Brand Quotations; Thinking Automats; Window Dressing; Reproduction and Make-Up; Consumer Goods in the Museum, Art in the Department Store; 


Everyday Life Made Public; From Font to Image; Drugs and Consumption; Everyday Heroes; Fresh from the Machine; The Outdoor Life; Postmodern Clichés; Image Resolution; The Fragmented Body; Blow-Up and Take-Off; Woman as Fetish; Object as Body; Graphic Art; Artificial Worlds.

Among the themes four examples show the range of the exhibition:

Reality as Collage: In the early stages of Pop Art and contemporary design, clashes of techniques, materials and themes were typical motifs. The upheavals in society and the new composite reality left their mark on aesthetic expression in Pop Art. The collage form, which mixes art and design, took on new life.

Everyday HeroesThe bold aesthetic of the billboard, which portrayed people and products as stylized icons, was taken further in Pop Art. Celebrities were acclaimed or degraded by the artists, while designers exploited motifs and methods to create utility objects which were for example either formed as provocative sculptures or given a form that primarily signalled ‘image’.

Woman as Fetish: The image of woman in Pop Art was mainly created by male artists, mostly inspired by the media. The female figure was viewed as an object of erotic desire and as such a victim of voyeurism. The representations of women also materialized as sculptural plastic furniture with ambivalent messages.

Artificial Worlds: In the post-war period America quickly established its position as a role model. Havng your own home, TV and car became the great ideal for ordinary people. And a particular kind of closed-in state was created for all purposes and in all sizes: from Tupperware, which preserved food in airtight containers, to hermetically sealed life-support capsules. The idea of a life on the Moon became more and more plausible, and psychedelic drugs were advocated for achieving boundless ‘inner space’. 

Works by Andy Warhol © The Andy Warhol Foundation for The Visual Arts, Inc./ 2013