Andy Warhol - Gee Merrie Shoe

Shoes were a mainstay throughout Warhol’s art career; in 1949, on his second day introducing himself to publishers in New York, he received his first assignment as a commercial illustrator- to illustrate shoes for New York’s Glamour Magazine. In the 1950s, Warhol was also responsible for revamping I. Miller’s advertising campaign, specifically through his blotted line drawings of shoes. He was so successful in this area that he eventually became known in the industry as “the shoe person.”

Warhol created Gee Merrie Shoes around the same time as he created his I. Miller advertising campaign; Gee Merrie Shoes features Warhol’s blotted line technique—a technique which Warhol developed as a college student. It has been suggested that the script underlining the image was written by Warhol’s mother – it is certainly in her style.

His show illustrations play into some of the overarching themes of Warhol’s work: industry, capitalism, and (perhaps above all) fashion. According to Warhol, “Fashion wasn't what you wore someplace anymore; it was the whole reason for going.” And, as Warhol said, “You can never have enough shoes.”