Cultural icon  

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Mona Lisa, or La Gioconda. (La Joconde), is a 16th century oil painting by Leonardo da Vinci, and is one of the most famous paintings in the world. It has acquired an iconic status in popular culture. In 1963, pop artist Andy Warhol started making colorful serigraph prints of the Mona Lisa. Warhol thus consecrated her as a modern icon, similar to Marilyn Monroe or Elvis Presley. At the same time, his use of a stencil process and crude colors implies a criticism of the debasement of aesthetic values in a society of mass production and mass consumption. Today the Mona Lisa is frequently reproduced, finding its way on to everything from carpets to mouse pads.
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Mona Lisa, or La Gioconda. (La Joconde), is a 16th century oil painting by Leonardo da Vinci, and is one of the most famous paintings in the world. It has acquired an iconic status in popular culture. In 1963, pop artist Andy Warhol started making colorful serigraph prints of the Mona Lisa. Warhol thus consecrated her as a modern icon, similar to Marilyn Monroe or Elvis Presley. At the same time, his use of a stencil process and crude colors implies a criticism of the debasement of aesthetic values in a society of mass production and mass consumption. Today the Mona Lisa is frequently reproduced, finding its way on to everything from carpets to mouse pads.

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

A cultural icon is an object or person which is distinctive to, or particularly representative of, a specific culture. An example is the bowler hat, which could be considered an English cultural icon.

The labeling of a person or thing as cultural icon can create controversy. The label may elevate the subject out of the realm of the ordinary and interfere with objective analysis.

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Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Cultural icon" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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