Sotheby's to offer Andy Warhol's earliest self-portrait
One of Andy Warhol's earliest self-portraits will be offered for sale at Sotheby's later this month.
The silkscreen print, created in 1963, is based on a photo of Warhol taken in a dime store photo-booth.
It marked the first time Warhol stepped into frame to become the subject of his own work, and his appearance soon became as iconic as his other celebrity portraits.
The artwork is expected to sell for $5 - $7 million during a sale of contemporary art in London on June 28.
Back in 2011, the very first work Warhol ever created in the series, featuring four of his original photo-booth snaps, sold at Christie's in New York for $38.4 million.
"In the age of Instagram, Warhol’s fabled prediction that ‘in the future, everyone will be world-famous for 15 minutes’ has never felt more prophetic, and the artist’s first self-portraits - created using a strip of photographs taken in a New York dime store photo-booth - have never felt more relevant to contemporary culture," said Sotheby's Senior Contemporary Art Specialist James Sevier.
"This is a work of immense art historical importance that marks the watershed moment when Warhol joined the canon of the greatest self-portraitists."
The portrait was commissioned by Detroit art collector and Patron Florence Barron, who originally wanted Warhol to paint her portrait.
However, it was soon suggested that Warhol was a better subject, and that a series of self portraits would elevate his career to the next level. As Barron put it succinctly, "Nobody knows me. They want to see you."
He then produced a series of eight works, all based on photographs taken in a 42nd Street photo booth.
This mechanical form of photography was the perfect match for his creative process, using screen print reproductions, and his own personal philosophy on Pop culture: just like a bottle of Coke, it was All-American and available to anyone for the cost of a dime.
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