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Preview: Children's Warhol Festival

Families discover Andy Warhol's playful side at the 92nd Street Y.

  • Moon Explorer

  • Space Ship

  • Monkey

  • Parrot

  • Toy Panda

  • Police Car

  • Apple

  • Police Car

  • Ship

  • Blue and Green Toy Panda

  • Roli Zoli

Moon Explorer

The 92nd Street Y is known for its kids' classes: Young artists can choose from more than 40 every semester, ranging from jewelry making to photography. But an actual art exhibit for kids? Featuring the work of an artist whose paintings can fetch $100 million apiece? Welcome to the , the centerpiece of which comprises 80 Andy Warhol paintings made especially for the 12-and-under set. "We've never done anything like this with an artist of this stature," says Robert Gilson, director of the 92nd Street Y School of the Arts. "Andy Warhol is very much in the public consciousness, but people—particularly children—never get to see this side of him."

Warhol created the works at the request of his art dealer, who had two young children, and they were exhibited in Zurich in 1983. As was done at the original event, the works will hang just a few feet off the ground, making it easy for kids to examine the whimsical paintings of a robot, a mechanical bear, and various animals, cars and boats. Other highlights include Warhol's fish-patterned wallpaper, one of his iconic 3-D soup cans and a shoe he made during his days as a commercial artist.

But the best part may be the free weekend workshops that accompany the exhibit. "Kids will get to see the work of a great artist, then make similar art themselves," says Gilson. Throughout the month, kids can take silk-screening classes, where they'll learn how to "pull" their own prints (ongoing Sat, Sun noon--4pm). A transformation workshop teaches tykes how to turn a found object into a work of art (Sept 10, 25 noon--1:30pm, ages 7 to 11; 2--4pm, ages 12 to 14). Kids can also take a ceramics class where they'll create shoe sculptures inspired by Warhol advertisements (Sept 11 noon--4pm, all ages), mimic his use of repetition in a rubber stamp workshop (Sept 18 noon--4pm, ages 5 to 8), or cut and decorate a metal fish bookmark (Sept 18 noon--4pm, ages 9 to 12). Who knows—maybe your little artist will be setting his own auction records one day.

92nd Street Y runs from Sept 6 to Oct 4. Workshops are filled on a first-come, first-served basis. Contact 92Y for details.

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