Brillo Boxes
1969 version of 1964 original
Andy Warhol (American, 1928-1987)
Not on View

Andy Warhol was one of the most important figures in the first generation of Pop artists. Born in Pittsburgh, he studied commercial art at the Carnegie Institute of Technology. After graduating, he moved to New York to pursue magazine illustration and advertising. His talents put him in high demand among advertising firms and publications. Soon he discovered the world of fine art, where his aptitude and eye for design translated well. The marriage of these two realms resulted in Warhol’s consummate trademark style, with the artist often taking a “hands-off” approach at his art “Factory” by having silkscreens produced under his direction.

Here, the multitude of boxes alludes to the abundance of seriality, as though more exist outside of this gallery. In fact, these Brillo Boxes are 1969 replicas of versions made in 1964. One hundred Brillo Boxes were fabricated by Warhol specifically for the 1970 exhibition that inaugurated the newly built Pasadena Art Museum at Orange Grove and Colorado Boulevards, which five years later became the Norton Simon Museum.

Both modular and as a whole, these boxes appear to contribute to a larger continuum. Warhol selected an object that already existed as a manufactured multiple—a case of Brillo-brand soap pads—and continued to add to the scale of their production by producing his own soap pad cases while the Brillo company was simultaneously manufacturing theirs.


  • Artist Name: Andy Warhol (American, 1928-1987)
  • Title: Brillo Boxes
  • Date: 1969 version of 1964 original
  • Medium: Acrylic silkscreen on wood
  • Dimensions: Each box: 20 x 20 x 17 in. (50.8 x 50.8 x 43.2 cm)
  • Credit Line: Norton Simon Museum, Gift of the Artist
  • Accession Number: P.1969.144.001-100
  • Copyright: © The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc. / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Object Information

Andy Warhol, gift 1969 to;
Pasadena Art Museum, Pasadena, 1969-1975;
Norton Simon Museum, Pasadena.

Andy Warhol - From A to B and Back Again

  • Whitney Museum of American Art, 2018-11-12 to 2019-03-31
  • San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, 2019-05-18 to 2019-09-02
  • Art Institute of Chicago, 2019-10-20 to 2020-01-26
  • Pop Art: U.S./U.K. Connections 1956-1966,no. 34 p. 178
  • The Tate Gallery, Warhol, p. 85
  • The Contemporary, p. 14
  • Bastian, Heiner, Andy Warhol Retrospektive,fig. 162 pp. 32, 220 - 221
  • Coplans, John, Serial Imagery, p. 130
  • Bastain, Heiner, Andy Warhol Retrospective,fig. 162 pp. 32, 220 - 221
  • 3 Pop Artists,
  • Bastian, Heiner, Retrospective Andy Warhol,fig. 162 pp. 218, 220-221, 311
  • Art Gallery of New South Wales, Pop Art: 1955-1970, p. 94
  • Global Village: The 60s,fig. 2 (detail), no. 215 pp. 70-70, 88
  • Craft, Catherine, The Burlington Magazine, p. 250
  • Armory Center for the Arts/Art Center College of Design, Radical Past: Contemporary Art & Music in Pasadena, 1960-1974, p. 86
  • Horlock, Mary, Modern Artists - Julian Opie,2004, p. 9, fig. [4]
  • The Contemporary, p. 3
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