Andy Warhol Artworks: The 10 Most Valuable

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justCollecting

2015-08-03 12:10:32

Here are the 10 most expensive works by Pop artist Andy Warhol ever sold, either through private sale or public auction.

 

10) Colored Mona Lisa (1964)

(Image: Christie's/The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc./Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York)

In 1963, Leonardo Da Vinci's masterpiece the Mona Lisa headed to the U.S for its first-ever exhibition outside France. The painting's American tour was organized by First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy, and set attendance records wherever it visited.

The following Spring Warhol produced a series of works based on the famous painting, inspired by its iconic imagery and the celebrity treatment it received. 'Colored Mona Lisa' combines high art with mass-production – the world's most famous painting repeatedly reproduced using the four basic pigments of commercial printing.

In May 2015, Colored Mona Lisa was acquired at a Christie's sale in New York by collector Larry Gagosian for $56,165,000.

9) Coca-Cola (3) (1962)

(Image: Christie's/The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc./Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York)

Unlike the majority of his silk-screen works, Coca-Cola (3) is one of Warhol's rare hand-painted artworks. Dating from 1962, the monumental black and white painting perfectly captures Warhol's ideas about consumerism and American iconography.

"What’s great about this country is that America started the tradition where the richest consumers buy essentially the same things as the poorest," Warhol once said. "You can be watching TV and see Coca Cola, and you know that the President drinks Coca Cola, Liz Taylor drinks Coca Cola, and just think, you can drink Coca Cola, too."

Having spent more than 20 years in the collection of the Mugrabi family, who are said to own more than 800 Warhol works, the painting sold at Christie's in November 2013 for $57,285,000.

8) Race Riot (1964)

(Image: Christie's/The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc./Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York)

Race Riot, executed in 1964, is part of the acclaimed 'Death and Disaster' series, and one of Warhol's few overtly political artworks. The silkscreen painting was based on a LIFE Magazine photograph by Charles Moore, depicting police officers disrupting a peaceful march by Civil Rights protestors in Birmingham, Alabama.

The painting was originally owned by American collector Sam Wagstaff, who later gave it to his partner, photographer Robert Mapplethorpe. Having previously been sold at Christie's in 1992 for $627,000, it sold through the same auction house in May 2014 to the Gagosian Gallery for $62,885,000. 

7) Men in Her Life (1962)

(Image: Phillips/The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc./Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York)

Men in Her Life, executed in 1962, is one of Warhol's earliest screen-printed works and illustrates his fascination with celebrity. Measuring 7ft tall, the work features a series of black and white images of the actress Elizabeth Taylor, one of Warhol's favourite subjects, pictured with her third husband Mike Todd and her future husband Eddie Fischer.

Formerly part of the Mugrabi family collection, the work sold at Phillips de Pury & Company in November 2010 for $63.4 million, with its new owner rumoured to be Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani.

6) Four Marlons (1966)   

(Image: Christie's/The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc./Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York)

In the late 1970s, the German WestSpiel casino group decided to redecorate their casino in Aachen with a pair of large Warhol works. The state-run company purchased Four Marlons and Triple Elvis from a Swiss art dealer for a combined value of around $200,000, and the two works spent three decades on display before WestSpiel placed them in storage in 2009.

Executed in 1966, Four Marlons depicts Marlon Brando in his most famous role as motorcycle gang leader Johnny Strabler, in the classic 1953 film The Wild One. Amidst a public outcry in Germany, the work was offered for sale at Christie's in November 2014 and sold for $69.6 million.

5) Green Car Crash (Green Burning Car I) (1963)    

(Image: Wikipedia/The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc./Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York)

Green Car Crash (Green Burning Car I) is another of Warhol's 'Death and Disaster' series executed in 1963. The work is based on a photograph by John Whitehead, published in Newsweek magazine, depicting a gruesome car accident following a high speed chase with the Seattle police.

Having remained in a private collection in Zürich for more than 30 years, the work set a new auction record for the artist when it sold at Christie's in May 2007 for $71.7 million (far beyond the previous record of $17.38 million). It was reportedly purchased by the billionaire Greek shipping magnate Philip Niarchos.

4) Turquoise Marilyn (1964)    

(Image: Sotheby's/The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc./Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York)

In 1964 Warhol created five portraits of Marilyn Monroe, each featured a different-coloured background. When performance artist Dorothy Podber visited the Factory and asked to shoot the paintings, Warhol agreed – believing she meant to photograph them. However, Podber then took out a small revolver and shot the stack of paintings, leaving a single bullet hole through the heads of four of the Marilyns. 

Turquoise Marilyn was the only painting of the group to survive the incident intact. In May 2007 the work was sold by Chicago plastics manufacturer collector Stefan Edlis, in a private sale via Larry Gagosian, for a reported $80 million. The current owner is the renowned art collector Steven A. Cohen.    

3) Triple Elvis (1963)    

(Image: Christie's/The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc./Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York)

Triple Elvis was the second work sold in 2014 from the collection of the German state-owned WestSpiel casino group.

In 1963 Warhol printed numerous images of Elvis onto a large roll of canvas, and sent it to the Ferus Gallery in Los Angeles along with a series of different-sized frames. He instructed gallery owner Irving Blume to cut the roll into sections to fit the frames, in whatever manner he liked, producing a series of works which are now amongst Warhol's most coveted.

Triple Elvis sold at Christie's in November 2014 for $81.9 million, the second-highest price ever achieved for a Warhol work at auction.

2) Eight Elvises (1963)

(Image: The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc./Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York)

Eight Elvises is the largest of Warhol's Elvis works featuring an image of the King of Rock 'n' Roll, dressed in a cowboy outfit from the 1960 western Flaming Star. Executed in 1963, the work was displayed in an exhibition at the Ferus Gallery in Los Angele,s before being acquired in the late 1960s by Italian collector Annibale Berlinghieri.

The work has not been seen publically for around 50 years, but according to reports it was sold in October 2008 in a private sale brokered by the New York-based art dealer Philippe Ségalot. The sale set a new record price for a work by Warhol, making him one of just five artists in history to reach the $100 million mark.

The current whereabouts of Eight Elvises remains unknown, although rumours abound that it was bought by the State of Qatar.

1) Silver Car Crash (Double Disaster) (1963)    

(Image: Sotheby's/The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc./Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York)

The third work on our list from Warhol's seminal 'Death and Disaster' series is the monumental Silver Car Crash (Double Disaster), dating from 1963.

Having previously been owned by Charles Saatchi and the famous Swiss dealer Thomas Ammann, the work was acquired in 1989 and spent 26 years in the same private collection, being shown publically just once during that period.

It finally resurfaced at a Sotheby's auction in New York in November 2013, where it was snapped up by an anonymous collector for $105.4 million, making Silver Car Crash (Double Disaster) the world's most valuable Andy Warhol artwork.

 

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