Benson’s Warhol photographs to join exhibition at the Scottish Parliament


Internationally acclaimed Scottish photographer Harry Benson CBE will loan two of his photos of Andy Warhol to the Scottish Parliament.

The two Warhol portraits will go on public display for the first time in the UK, and will complement the ‘Andy Warhol:  Pop, Power and Politics’ exhibition taking place at Holyrood from Saturday 5 October to Sunday 3 November as part of the Andrew Carnegie International Legacy Week. 

Scots-born Harry Benson’s images show a colour portrait of Warhol standing in front of his painting of American actress and singer Pia Zadora taken at the Factory, New York in 1983 and a black and white diptych (or a double image photograph) of Andy Warhol having lunch with Bianca Jagger, once again at the Factory in 1977.

The Presiding Officer, the Rt Hon Tricia Marwick MSP said:

“I am very grateful to Harry for loaning us these portraits. Like Warhol, he too has gained international acclaim for his images documenting political events and well known personalities from across the globe.

“These photographs will add another dimension to what is already an exciting exhibition here at Holyrood and I hope people will take advantage of this rare opportunity to see Warhol’s and Harry’s iconic images at the same time.” 

There are many parallels between Harry Benson and Andy Warhol. Both were born in 1929 and they were contemporaries in New York during their careers. Harry also photographed the following people who are featured in the Warhol exhibition: Nixon, Carter, Queen Elizabeth II, and Willy Brandt.

Harry Benson CBE, photographer said:

“I am honoured to have my photographs hang in the Scottish Parliament.   I hope very much to get to Edinburgh while the exhibition of Andy Warhol's art is on display.   In the 60's and 70's I used to see Andy out and about in New York City having a great time with his ‘superstar' entourage.  Yet, Andy Warhol was a serious artist, an innovator whose work changed how we view modern art. It has withstood the test of time."

‘Andy Warhol: Pop, Power and Politics’ is being exhibited in the Scottish Parliament in collaboration with The Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh and as a result of generous support from the Carnegie UK Trust.

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