Andy Warhol

Hong Kong 1956


Post-War & Contemporary Art

24 March 2021

Lot 31

An early work on paper by arguably one of the leading artists of the late twentieth century. Reputation aside, this ballpoint sketch portrays an urban scene with the simple and direct vision of a child exposed to new and exotic locations. The top right hand corner depicts an oversized advertisement (bottle), and dense vegetation rendered in the background, between buildings, suggests a means of escape. If there was a vulnerable moment before this artist's infinitely clever representations of advertising and celebrity culture, here it is. Depending how we evaluate his later career, early material of this quality may be revelatory. There's lightness of touch and great immediacy without a trace of visual fatigue, not unlike a fresh drawing by Henri Matisse. The Warhol Foundation verifies this along with many other sketches from the period and it's possible mainstream collectors have underestimated their merit and consequent potential as investment works. Quite a buzz to own an original Warhol in any case. Auctioneer's estimate (£5,000-8,000 AU $9,000-14,000).

Price realised at auction: £29,000 AU $52,761

Fiona Pardington      Gold Nymph


Works of Art

29 March 2021