Birmingham Race Riot (FS II.3)
By Andy Warhol
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Reference: FS II.3
Edition size: edition of 500
Sheet size: 20x24 inches
BIRMINGHAM RACE RIOT 3
Birmingham Race Riot 3 presents a sobering image of the civil disorder event that took place in Birmingham, Alabama. The piece represents social injustice, a theme not often explored by Andy Warhol. While many of his pieces may allude to societal issues, this print is one of the only Warhol pieces that explicitly demonstrates the need for racial equality﹣a major matter of contention in society at the time. Warhol adds none of his usual pomp and flair to this print, which is strictly black and white, much like the racial divide that was the source of unfair and inhumane treatment. The bold contrast of the black shadows against the stark-white- highlights emphasize the dramatic structure of the scene.
BIRMINGHAM RACE RIOT 3 AS PART OF A LARGER BODY OF WORK
Warhol recreated a scene that occurred in 1963 in which an agreement to partial desegregation of public spaces led to the violent clash between the Birmingham Police Department and black civilians of Birmingham. Birmingham Race Riot 3 is a print that was created early on in Warhol’s artistic career, which was based off a photograph taken by Charles Moore in Life Magazine, May 17, 1963. Warhol later made painted versions of the same subject.