Acquired jointly with the National Galleries of Scotland through The d'Offay Donation with assistance from the National Heritage Memorial Fund and the Art Fund 2008
Warhol showed a great deal of interest in the Chinese political situation in 1971: “I have been reading so much about China. They’re so nutty. They don’t believe in creativity. The only picture they ever have is of Mao Zedong. It’s great. It looks like a silkscreen”. The following year he created a portrait of the communist leader based on a photograph from his famous Little Red Book – ‘The thoughts of Chairman Mao’. Like many of his 1970s portraits, Warhol’s Mao paintings are much more painterly than his Pop works of the 1960s with strong, colourful brushwork clearly visible. This poster is for a Warhol exhibition at the Hokin Gallery, Chicago. The show opened in 1977, the year the Cultural Revolution in China officially ended following Mao’s death in 1976.