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  • Provenance

    Private collection, Beverly Hills

  • Exhibited

    Tokyo, Mitsukoshi Ltd., Andy Warhol, January 8 – January 20, 1991; Tel Aviv Museum of Art, Andy Warhol, August 27 – October 27, 1992; Vienna, Kunsthaus Wien, Andy Warhol, February 22 – May 30, 1993; The National Museum in Warsaw, Andy Warhol, March 6 – May 3, 1998; The National Museum in Cracow, Andy Warhol, May 19 – July 12, 1998; Rio de Janeiro, Centro Cultural Banco do Brasil, Warhol, October 12 – December 12, 1999; Kochi, The Museum of Art, Andy Warhol, February 6 – March 26, 2000; Tokyo, The Bunkamura Museum of Art, Andy Warhol, April 1 – May 21, 2000; Umeda-Osaka, Daimaru Museum, Andy Warhol, May 24 – June 11, 2000; Hiroshima City Museum of Contemporary Art, Andy Warhol, June 17 – July 30, 2000; Kawamura Memorial Museum of Art, Andy Warhol, August 5 – October 1, 2000; Nagoya City Art Museum, Andy Warhol, October 7 – December 17, 2000; Niigata City Art Museum, Andy Warhol, January 4 – February 12, 2001

  • Literature

    D. Folga - Januszewska, ed., Andy Warhol, Warsaw, 1998, p. 132 (illustrated); S. Kijima, N. Hiromoto, and K. Nishihara, eds., Andy Warhol, Nagoya, 2000, p. 147 (illustrated); T. Shafrazi, ed., Andy Warhol Portraits, London, 2007, p. 185 (illustrated)

  • Catalogue Essay

    Andy Warhol was fascinated by people, and he immortalized their images in his celebrated portraits. The subject of the present lot is R. C. Gorman (1931–2005), a Native American artist who was once referred to as “the Picasso of American art” by The New York Times. His paintings are primarily of Native American women and characterized by fluid forms and vibrant colors. With a strong profile, and vibrant red and turquoise, Warhol rendered a proud and powerful image of Gorman. As is typical of aWarhol portrait, this painting does more than just capture a likeness of its subject; the painting is so iconic that it becomes an emblem for the subject.
    His portraits lead us to the edge of sheer impossibility and beyond. No one, not even Debbie Harry, can be as glamorous as Andy’s Debbie Harry. Realizing this, we step over the edge, back into the real world. Unsettled by the abrupt clarities, the shrewd ambiguities, of these portraits, we have no use for the old ways of stratifying people. Warhol obliquely teaches us the egalitarianism that begins with an indefatigable attentiveness, a generosity that renders everyone fascinating – hence “a beauty,” as he liked to say. He focused on stars not to set them apart but to bring them close. It was only by reminding us of the way we feel about Marilyn and Elvis that he could invoke the teeming citizenry of his dream America. He wanted us to see how good the entire population looks, how various and unexpected and glamorous everyone is and can hardly help being, so long as we remain attentive.                                                                                                                                                                                                          C. Ratcliff, “Looking Good: Andy Warhol’s Utopian Portraiture,” Andy Warhol Portraits, London, 2007, p. 21

  • Artist Biography

    Andy Warhol

    American • 1928 - 1987

    Known as the “King of Pop,” Andy Warhol was the leading face of the Pop Art movement in the United States in the 1960s. Following an early career as a commercial illustrator, Warhol achieved fame with his revolutionary series of silkscreened prints and paintings of familiar objects like Campbell's soup tins, and celebrities like Marilyn Monroe. Obsessed with popular culture, celebrity, and advertising, Warhol created his slick, seemingly mass-produced images of everyday subject matter from his famed Factory studio in New York City. His use of mechanical methods of reproduction, notably the commercial technique of silk screening, wholly revolutionized art-making.

    Working as an artist, but also director and producer, Warhol produced a number of avant-garde films in addition to managing the experimental rock band The Velvet Underground and founding Interview magazine. A central figure in the New York art scene until his untimely death in 1987, Warhol was notably a mentor to such artists as Keith Haring and Jean-Michel Basquiat.

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Portrait of R. C. Gorman


Acrylic and silkscreen ink on canvas.

40 x 40 in. (101.6 x 101.6 cm).

$400,000 - 600,000 

Contemporary Art Part I

13 Nov 2008, 7pm
New York