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How Andy Warhol's Brillo Box Changed Filmmaker's Family
In 1969, Lisanne Skyler’s parents bought a piece of Andy Warhol’s artwork. It was an exact replica of a shipping carton for Brillo soap pads: a small, yellow box painted with the Brillo logo and a sale — 3 cents off.
Warhol’s Brillo Boxes were first dismissed by the art world, but 40 years later, it’s a different story.
Skyler is now a professor in the University of Arizona’s School of Theatre, Film and Television and a documentary filmmaker. In her newest film, she traces that Brillo Box from her parents’ small Manhattan apartment to a Christie’s auction house stage.
I spoke with Skyler more about her new film, which just debuted on HBO, and about how this Brillo Box — 3 cents off — changed her family.
There will be a screening of the film in Tucson on Sept. 24 at 2 p.m. at the Loft Cinema followed by a conversation with Skyler and the Loft Cinema program director Jeff Yanc.
EDITOR'S NOTE: This story has been modified to correct the name of the University of Arizona's School of Theatre, Film and Television.
- "Lot 10" a retake on the Brillo Box by artist Charles Lutz, inspired by the path of the Skyler Brillo Box.
(Brillo trademark used with permission of Armaly Brands Inc. / Photo Courtesy of HBO)
- Baby Lisanne Skyler on the Brillo Box, 1969
(The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc. / Brillo trademark used with permission of Armaly Brands Inc. / Photo courtesy of HBO)
- The bidding auction for Andy Warhol’s Brillo Box at Christie’s
(Photo courtesy of HBO)
- Lisanne Skyler
(Photo by Damon Mosier / Courtesy of HBO)