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Andy Warhol (American, 1928-1987) $ (Quadrant), 1981

Andy Warhol Sale History

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Andy Warhol (American, 1928-1987) $ (Quadrant), 1981
Item Details
Description
Andy Warhol
(American, 1928-1987)
$ (Quadrant), 1981
screenprint on Lenox Museum Board
signed and inscribed 'to Bob love Andy Warhol 81 HC' in pencil, verso
40 x 32 inches.
Property from the Collection of Mr. Robert Denison
Literature:
Feldman & Schellmann IIA.283-284

Provenance:
Gift from the artist to the present owner, 1981

Lot Essay:

Unlike traditional artists who might sketch an initial outline for an artwork on paper or in a sketchbook, Andy Warhol used the physical act of screenprinting as a foundation of his creative process. An image would be chosen, a screen would be produced using the image, then various samples would be printed so that he could choose which variation he preferred. There would be experimentation with layout, colors, colorblock overlays, or collage elements onto the prints and from those ‘trial proofs’ Andy would choose which variant would become the larger, regular edition. Very rarely are we provided insight into the very early stages of this process since very few of these early trials were kept, however the prints presented here, in lots 14 and 15, give us a rare and exclusive glimpse into the process of this iconic artist.

In 1982, Warhol published a series of 13 unique prints, based on the dollar sign. Using imagery found in commercial typography, these prints are now highly sought after and immediately recognizable as the apex of Warhol’s obsession with consumerism, pop culture, and one of the most coveted objects of all time – money. In 1981, Warhol was working through his creative process with these prints, changing layouts, swapping out colors, adding in drawn lines, when Bob Denison, his friend and coincidentally a hedge fund manager, stopped by The Factory. Bob and Andy had been friends since around 1970 or 1971 and he would meet with Bob to ‘talk about investments’ as Andy mentioned in his diaries in 1979 (Andy Warhol, The Andy Warhol Diaries, ed. Pat Hackett, 1999, p. 252). Bob told Andy that he liked the prints and the next day, Fred Hughes, Warhol’s business manager, showed up on Bob’s doorstep with the prints in hand as a gift. After all, Bob worked with money so it is only fitting that he have them.

This was not out of character at all for Warhol. Donna de Salvo, in her essay ‘God is in the Details: The Prints of Andy Warhol’ very astutely points out ‘...we might learn more about Warhol from what he gave away than from what he sold... [he] gave away many prints to friends and colleagues...Most of these are unique, having been produced with the same experimental work processes that characterized other works.’ (in Frayda Feldman and Claudia Defendi, Andy Warhol Prints: A Catalogue Raisonné, 1962-1987, p. 32). Andy’s gift to Bob on that day in 1981 was significant because the prints are clearly in mid-production, clearly handled roughly with bent corners and a work in progress. Artworks frozen in time because Andy decided to give them to a friend before he finished the series.

Signed, dated 1981, dedicated to Bob, and inscribed HC, the prints presented here are unique in their color schemes, but Lot 15 is also unique in its choice of signs. In the final $ (Quadrant)screenprints, Warhol used the same $ signs for each quadrant. However, lot 15, utilizes four different typographic samples on one sheet. This is not consistent with any of the final published proofs for the $ prints. Each sheet of the thirteen $ prints that Warhol published uses different $ signs however, he never varied the $ signs on one sheet (see F&S II.274-286 and IIA.274-286). Andy’s act of delivering the prints to Bob was significant in that it preserved the process of creation that Andy was pursuing on that particular day. Donna de Salvo’s statement above, that ‘we might learn more about Warhol from what he gave away than from what he sold’ is indeed true, especially when the giving happened in mid-production.

In these prints, we get not only this incredible sense of process, but also the symbolism, sense of repeated imagery, and iconic exemplification of popular culture that characterizes every work by Andy Warhol. They are an embodiment not only of the artist we all know, but also of the artist behind the scenes.

‘I’m convinced that if you can spell things out very simply and say everything clearly right away, you’ll be a success in business. Like Bob Denison can do that.’

-Andy Warhol, The Andy Warhol Diaries, ed. Pat Hackett, 1999, p. 201.
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Andy Warhol (American, 1928-1987) $ (Quadrant), 1981

Estimate $80,000 - $120,000
Sep 29, 2022
See Sold Price
Starting Price $40,000
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0015: Andy Warhol (American, 1928-1987) $ (Quadrant), 1981
Sold for $95,0006 Bids
Est. $80,000 - $120,000Starting Price $40,000
Prints & Multiples
Sep 29, 2022 11:00 AM EDT
Buyer's Premium 29%
Lot 0015 Details
Description
...
Andy Warhol
(American, 1928-1987)
$ (Quadrant), 1981
screenprint on Lenox Museum Board
signed and inscribed 'to Bob love Andy Warhol 81 HC' in pencil, verso
40 x 32 inches.
Property from the Collection of Mr. Robert Denison
Literature:
Feldman & Schellmann IIA.283-284

Provenance:
Gift from the artist to the present owner, 1981

Lot Essay:

Unlike traditional artists who might sketch an initial outline for an artwork on paper or in a sketchbook, Andy Warhol used the physical act of screenprinting as a foundation of his creative process. An image would be chosen, a screen would be produced using the image, then various samples would be printed so that he could choose which variation he preferred. There would be experimentation with layout, colors, colorblock overlays, or collage elements onto the prints and from those ‘trial proofs’ Andy would choose which variant would become the larger, regular edition. Very rarely are we provided insight into the very early stages of this process since very few of these early trials were kept, however the prints presented here, in lots 14 and 15, give us a rare and exclusive glimpse into the process of this iconic artist.

In 1982, Warhol published a series of 13 unique prints, based on the dollar sign. Using imagery found in commercial typography, these prints are now highly sought after and immediately recognizable as the apex of Warhol’s obsession with consumerism, pop culture, and one of the most coveted objects of all time – money. In 1981, Warhol was working through his creative process with these prints, changing layouts, swapping out colors, adding in drawn lines, when Bob Denison, his friend and coincidentally a hedge fund manager, stopped by The Factory. Bob and Andy had been friends since around 1970 or 1971 and he would meet with Bob to ‘talk about investments’ as Andy mentioned in his diaries in 1979 (Andy Warhol, The Andy Warhol Diaries, ed. Pat Hackett, 1999, p. 252). Bob told Andy that he liked the prints and the next day, Fred Hughes, Warhol’s business manager, showed up on Bob’s doorstep with the prints in hand as a gift. After all, Bob worked with money so it is only fitting that he have them.

This was not out of character at all for Warhol. Donna de Salvo, in her essay ‘God is in the Details: The Prints of Andy Warhol’ very astutely points out ‘...we might learn more about Warhol from what he gave away than from what he sold... [he] gave away many prints to friends and colleagues...Most of these are unique, having been produced with the same experimental work processes that characterized other works.’ (in Frayda Feldman and Claudia Defendi, Andy Warhol Prints: A Catalogue Raisonné, 1962-1987, p. 32). Andy’s gift to Bob on that day in 1981 was significant because the prints are clearly in mid-production, clearly handled roughly with bent corners and a work in progress. Artworks frozen in time because Andy decided to give them to a friend before he finished the series.

Signed, dated 1981, dedicated to Bob, and inscribed HC, the prints presented here are unique in their color schemes, but Lot 15 is also unique in its choice of signs. In the final $ (Quadrant)screenprints, Warhol used the same $ signs for each quadrant. However, lot 15, utilizes four different typographic samples on one sheet. This is not consistent with any of the final published proofs for the $ prints. Each sheet of the thirteen $ prints that Warhol published uses different $ signs however, he never varied the $ signs on one sheet (see F&S II.274-286 and IIA.274-286). Andy’s act of delivering the prints to Bob was significant in that it preserved the process of creation that Andy was pursuing on that particular day. Donna de Salvo’s statement above, that ‘we might learn more about Warhol from what he gave away than from what he sold’ is indeed true, especially when the giving happened in mid-production.

In these prints, we get not only this incredible sense of process, but also the symbolism, sense of repeated imagery, and iconic exemplification of popular culture that characterizes every work by Andy Warhol. They are an embodiment not only of the artist we all know, but also of the artist behind the scenes.

‘I’m convinced that if you can spell things out very simply and say everything clearly right away, you’ll be a success in business. Like Bob Denison can do that.’

-Andy Warhol, The Andy Warhol Diaries, ed. Pat Hackett, 1999, p. 201.
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