I never understood why when you died, you didn’t just vanish, and everything could just keep going on the way it was only you just wouldn’t be there. I always thought I’d like my own tombstone to be blank. No epitaph and no name.
Well, actually, I’d like it to say “figment.”
The Figment Project
To honor the anniversary of Warhol’s birthday, August 6, 2013 The Andy Warhol Museum and EarthCam launched a collaborative project titled Figment, a live feed of Warhol’s gravesite. This live feed, viewable 24 hours a day, seven days a week worldwide is available above.
Gravesite as Pilgrimage
Andy Warhol died on February 22, 1987 and is buried at St. John the Baptist Byzantine Catholic Cemetery, which is owned and operated by St. John the Baptist Church in Pittsburgh – a sister parish of St. John Chrysostom Byzantine Catholic Church. Warhol’s parents, Julia and Andrej, are also buried at the same cemetery.
Hundreds of devotees make the pilgrimage yearly to Warhol’s resting place. Often these visitors leave mementos at the site, including such popular culture items as Campbell’s Soup cans and Coca-Cola bottles.
The grave has been featured in many documentaries and art pieces and has become a focal point for artist Madelyn Roehrig’s ongoing art project Figments: Conversations with Andy.
As a child, Warhol and his family were members of and attended weekly liturgies at St. John Chrysostom Byzantine Catholic Church, which is located in the Greenfield neighborhood of Pittsburgh. The church was established in 1910 by Rusyn immigrants from the Carpathian Mountains in present day Eastern Slovakia, the birth place of Warhol’s parents. As an adult, Warhol continued to regularly attend church at St. Mary’s Byzantine Catholic Church in New York City.
The Funeral & Memorial
Warhol’s funeral took place on February 27, 1987, at Holy Ghost Byzantine Catholic Church, Pittsburgh, PA. A memorial service took place in New York City on April 1st, 1987 at St. Patrick’s Cathedral, and followed by a reception attended by friends and colleagues from around the world.
The EarthCam Connection
EarthCam provided all the camera technology and services behind Figment. To view the entire installation including the ChurchCam and FigmentCam Pop Art, visit earthcam.com/warhol.
“I met Andy at a dinner and we discussed the culture of fame and television. I believe he would have been intrigued with using a live webcam to make art,” said Brian Cury, CEO and Founder of EarthCam.
Join the Conversation – #warholFigment
Join the conversation and share your thoughts on Twitter by using #warholFigment. Follow the museum at twitter.com/thewarholmuseum.