So, I've blogged about the paper dress movement, and its correlation to pop art. What I haven't talked about is the most sensational paper dress of them all: the dress known as the "Souper Dress."
What's the Souper Dress you ask? Starting in 1962, the most famous pop artist of them all, Andy Warhol, began creating his famous Campbell's soup can works. The incorporation of mundane commercial objects as "fine art" at first offended the art establishment, but now the cans have come to be an important part of art history and an easily recognizable symbol in our culture. Warhol himself said that, "a group of painters have come to the common conclusion that the most banal and even vulgar trappings of modern civilization can, when transposed to canvas, become Art."An original ad for the Souper Dress
So, whatever your thoughts about Warhol's work, it certainly provoked discussion and continues to be debated to this day.
But, back to the Souper Dress. In 1966-67, Campbell's soup decided to capitalize on Warhol's inclusion of their product in his art and on the whole paper dress movement by selling a paper dress with their soup cans as the design. Campbell's marketed their paper dress as "The Souper Dress" (nice play on words there Campbell's). If you sent in two Campbell's soup labels plus $1.00, you too could own the Souper Dress, which by the way now sells on eBay for anywhere from $700 to $1800 depending on the condition. Yep, the Souper Dress has become quite the cultural icon.(ABOVE)
So, I wanted to pay homage to pop art, Warhol, the paper dress movement, the Souper Dress. But how could I? Certainly, it would be impossible to find Campbell's soup can fabric unless I screenprinted it myself. And that wasn't going to happen.
But it WASN'T impossible! My husband found a dealer on Etsy who sells a material that's akin to canvas bag material (advertised as twill blend I believe) with the Campbell's soup cans printed on them. Oh boy! I was just a tad ecstatic...
So, despite this crazy twill blend being a weird foreign material to me, I embarked on making my very own skirt out of Campbell's soup can fabric. And I'm really happy with the results. I lined things up as good as I could stand (remember-- I'd rather not get too picky, because I'd rather have fun than pull out my hair).
And the result, I think, is a fitting tribute! Plus, it's a great conversation piece. The one thing that's a little sad though...the people who say, "You must really like soup." And they're being serious. Ah, such is life.