Andy Warhol’s Marilyn, One of Pop Art’s Best-Known Works, Sets Record for American Art at Auction | American News



One of pop-art’s best-known pieces, Shot Sage Blue Marilyn, was sold at auction in New York.

Andy Warhol’s famous 1964 screen-printed portrait fetched $195m (£158m).

The work was part of a series of portraits Warhol made of the actress after her death at her Los Angeles home in 1962.

Held in the collection of Swiss art dealers Thomas and Doris Ammann, it was offered for sale in New York by the auction house Christie’s.

Alex Rotter, president of 20th and 21st century art at Christie’s, said the painting “transcends the genre of portraiture” and was the “absolute pinnacle of American pop”.

Pre-sale estimates had reached $200 million (£151 million).

The sale broke the previous record for a US artwork at auction of $110.5million (£89.5) set in 2017 for a 1982 painting by Jean-Michel Basquiat.

Built around a promotional photo by Henry Hathaway of Monroeone of Hollywood’s best-known stars, from the 1953 film Niagara, paint is splashed with bright colors on her eyes, hair and lips.

The screen printing technique he used departed from the mass production techniques for which he was best known.

Each has been painted on a background of different colors – red, orange, blue, sage blue (the one being auctioned) and turquoise.

Its title refers to an incident in which a performance artist shot a stack of four portraits of Marilyn in Warhol’s studio with a pistol, although Shot Sage Blue Marilyn was not hit by a bullet.

The painting was exhibited in museums around the world until it was offered for sale by the Thomas and Doris Ammann Foundation in Zurich.

The foundation helps children with health and education.

It was Mr. Ammann who purchased the painting, for an undisclosed sum, in the early 1980s.

After his death in 1993, his sister Doris ran his gallery until her death last year.

The foundation was created in their honor and the proceeds from the sale will go to his work.

Warhol died in 1987.

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