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Scouring the Globe: A Brillo Box Moment, at the Armory Show and Beyond

It is both surreal and disturbing to watch people–Very Important People, no less–stagger around an art fair carrying unwieldy cardboard boxes, but such was the scene at yesterday’s Armory Show preview, where a rapidly shrinking tower of the colorful crates made famous by Andy Warhol was there for the taking. And take they did. The flurry of grabbing, folding, and foreign accents was apropos, as this was “Babel (Brillo Stockholm Type)” (2013) by Charles Lutz. The work was commissioned for the fair by Eric Shiner, director of the Andy Warhol Museum. He also curated the special “Armory Focus: USA” section of the fair, which includes Gagosian Gallery, making its Armory debut with a booth wallpapered in Warhol–the man, the myth, the camouflage.

This outbreak of Brillo Box fever is not an isolated incident. Belgian furniture brand Quinze & Milan has inked the appropriate licensing paperwork with the Andy Warhol Foundation to produce the Andy Warhol Brillo Box pouf (at left), a cushy foam cube screen-printed with the Brillo logo. The stool-sculptures will be unveiled next month at MOST in Milan, but the online retailer Fab is now taking pre-orders at $425 a pop.

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