Newsdeck

Andy Warhol fetches high price

Warhol’s famed ‘Marilyn’ silk-screen sells for record $195 million at auction

American pop artist Andy Warhol (1928 - 1987) at the Roundhouse in London, which is showing his play 'Andy Warhol's Pork', London, UK, July 1971. (Photo by Evening Standard/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

May 10 (Reuters) - Pop artist Andy Warhol's famed 1964 silk-screen portrait of Marilyn Monroe sold for $195 million at auction on Monday, a record for a work by an American artist sold at auction.

By Dan Whitcomb

“Shot Sage Blue Marilyn” is one in a series of portraits Warhol made of the actress following her death in 1962 and has since become one of pop art’s best-known pieces.

Held in the collection of Swiss art dealers Thomas and Doris Ammann, it was sold by Christie’s at an auction in New York. Pre-sale estimates had reached as high as $200 million.

The painting sold for a hammer price of $170 million Added fees gave it a final price of $195 million.

The sale broke the previous record for an American artwork at auction of $110.5 million set in 2017 for a 1982 painting by Jean-Michel Basquiat.

“‘Shot Sage Blue Marilyn’ is the absolute pinnacle of American Pop,” Alex Rotter, chairman of 20th and 21st Century art at Christie’s, said in a statement announcing the auction. “The painting transcends the genre of portraiture, superseding 20th century art and culture.”

The painting is built on a promotional photo of Monroe from the 1953 film “Niagara,” screened with bright colors over her eyes, hair and lips.

Its title refers to an incident in which a woman shot at a stack of four Marilyn portraits in Warhol’s studio with a pistol, although “Shot Sage Blue Marilyn” was not struck by a bullet.

Monroe was one of Hollywood’s best-known stars before her death of an overdose at her home in Los Angeles on Aug. 4, 1962.

Warhol died in 1987.

 

(Reporting by Dan Whitcomb; Editing by Rosalba O’Brien and Stephen Coates)

Gallery

Comments - Please in order to comment.

Please peer review 3 community comments before your comment can be posted

We would like our readers to start paying for Daily Maverick...

…but we are not going to force you to. Over 10 million users come to us each month for the news. We have not put it behind a paywall because the truth should not be a luxury.

Instead we ask our readers who can afford to contribute, even a small amount each month, to do so.

If you appreciate it and want to see us keep going then please consider contributing whatever you can.

Support Daily Maverick→
Payment options

Become a Maverick Insider

This could have been a paywall

On another site this would have been a paywall. Maverick Insider keeps our content free for all.

Become an Insider