For anyone looking to own a piece by Andy Warhol, now is your chance. But it’s going to cost you a pretty penny.
Christie’s auction house is gearing up to sell one of the artist’s most famous paintings – a neon, silkscreen image known as “Shot Sage Blue Marilyn.” The iconic piece features a close-up image of Marilyn Monroe in an array of bright colors, including neon yellow hair and red lips.
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As NPR reports, the auction house is expecting to fetch $200 million for the piece. If it sells for the estimated price, it’ll become the most expensive piece of art from the 20th century to ever be sold.
The painting is being sold by the Thomas and Doris Ammann Foundation Zurich, an organization founded by the brother and sister art duo in 1977. Part of the proceeds will go back into the foundation.
During their lifetimes, the siblings founded the Thomas Ammann Fine Art AG gallery, which has housed paintings from some of the most renowned artists, including Francis Bacon and Andy Warhol.
Thomas Ammann, who knew Warhol personally, is known for creating a catalogue raisonné of all of Warhol’s works. The catalogue’s volumes were published in 2002 to 2004 in collaboration with the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts Inc, New York.
“Shot Sage Blue Marilyn” is part of Warhol’s Shot Marilyns, which featured four canvases featuring the same image of Marilyn Monroe but with different colors.
Warhol originally created five canvases featuring Marilyn Monroe with different background colors — red, orange, light blue, sage blue, and turquoise. However, the one with the turquois background didn’t debut with the four in 1964.
Nevertheless, all five of the canvases have been sold at varying times. The Blue was bought for $5,000 by Peter Brant only three years after the collection’s debut.
However, the others went on to sell for six figures. Billionaire Phillip Niarchos purchased the Red for $4.1 million, while Steve Cohen bought the Turquoise one for an estimated $80 million.
Though the Orange canvases originally sold for $17.3 million in the ‘90s, it was later bought by Kenneth Griffin for a rumored $200 million.
It’s not unusual for Warhol’s paintings to go for record-breaking amounts. In 2013, his painting “Silver Car Crash (Double Disaster)” was auctioned off for $105 million. The piece shows the aftermath of a car crash and includes a mangled body within a wrecked car’s interior. The painting had only ever been viewed by the public once prior.
Sources: NPR, Art News, NBC,
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