My visit to Tate Modern was a journey in art history. Two artworks inspired me significantly - the Marilyn Diptych by Andy Warhol and the Weeping Woman by Pablo Picasso.
Andy Warhol created the Marilyn Diptych few years after Marilyn Monroe died in 1962 (Marilyn Diptych 1962, Caption). This Pop Art piece is assembled from numerous silk screen paintings. It is a dual composition representing on one side Marilyn's popularity and wide exposure (the repetitive color images) and on the other side her mortality (the black and white fading images). Traditionally the diptych format has been used in early Christian icons (Wikipedia). It seems that Marilyn, a symbol of femininity and mass culture, is elevated virtually to a divine being in this artwork. Following this example, I would like to find out in the future, how the use of various formats can affect the meaning of my illustrations.
Picasso represents the School of Paris and early modernism. He invented Cubism with Braque in 1907 and also exhibited with Surrealists (Alley 1981). The Weeping Woman is an emotional piece. It is a colorful oil painting, created in protest of the bombing of Guernica. The vivid color palette, a mixture of bright colors and dark hues, conveys the painful emotion. I admire the skilful way Picasso balanced the color proportions to tip the feeling toward violent and sad, despite the joyful yellow background and fresh, feminine turquoise shades on the skin of the woman. What appealed to me in this painting is the pictorial flatness and the fragmented style of the artwork.
What is similar between the two works above, and what attracted my attention, is the effective use of color to communicate emotion and the way they utilize feminine iconology (the celebrity Marilyn Monroe in the former, and the symbol of the mother in the latter).
Alley R., Catalogue of the Tate Gallery's Collection of Modern Art other than Works by British Artists, Tate Gallery and Sotheby Parke-Bernet, London 1981, pp.591-2