A Public Sphere for Poetry, Politics, and Nature
Andy Warhol’s Fifteen Minutes which aired on MTV in the late 1980s was a multimedia circus featuring “The high and the low. The rich and the famous. The struggling artists and the rising stars,” as Warhol Museum curator Geralyn Huxley puts it. In this clip, Ian McKellen and the Fleshtones bring Shakespeare’s racy Sonnet 20 to a young hip audience. The poem’s opening line, ‘A woman’s face, with Nature’s own hand painted’, immediately establishes the theme: Shakespeare is discussing the effeminate beauty of the Fair Youth, the male addressee of most of his sonnets.
Sonnet 20 by William Shakespeare
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