Lot Details

This pristine portfolio of 10 silkscreens in color was stored safely in a flat file at the original printers for nearly 40 years, never before being framed until last year. Each impression is in mint condition, retaining all of the original color and quality rarely seen in the majority of Mao prints that come up for auction.

Each print is signed with stamp on verso by the Andy Warhol Art Authentication Board, and is inscribed with an authentication number. Each impression is accompanied by an individual certificate of authenticity by the AWAAB, in addition to the 1972 Copyright stamp on verso (COPYRIGHT © ANDY WARHOL 1972 PRINTED AT STYRIA STUDIOS INC. ).

Authenticated/Stamped complete portfolios only come to auction very rarely. In October 2008, at the very bottom of the market, a stamped and authenticated set at Christie’s London brought just under $500,000. That same month, also at Christie’s London, a signed set in purportedly “very good condition” realized $458,000, almost 10% less than the stamped set. Since then no other complete Stamped sets have come to auction. Prices for signed, complete sets as well as individual prints, have increased dramatically, due in large part to the increased demand from Asian collectors. As noted in the Index Graph (see Index Chart below), the market for Warhol Mao prints is steadily rising, therefore we believe this is an excellent opportunity to acquire one of the last remaining, pristine sets on the market.

In the aftermath of President Richard Nixon's 1972 visit to China, and its subsequent buzz in the press, Andy Warhol created a series of prints around the now immortalized image of the Chinese leader, Mao Zedong. Seeing a parallel between US media and Communist propaganda, as well as the cult like followings surrounding movie stars in the West and Mao in the East, Warhol executed his Mao portrait series in a similar fashion as the portraits he had created in the previous years of celebrities like Marilyn Monroe and Elvis Presley. These brightly colored reproductions of Mao, which were enhanced by the additions of layered graffiti-like scribbles screened on separately, transformed Mao into a world wide pop icon. The Whitney Museum of American Art exhibited this same portfolio in their wildly successful 1979 exhibition, 'Portraits of the 70s.'

All certificates, authentication numbers and additional detail images available upon request
Each work is museum mounted and framed with retro Kulicke 1970s style plexi-boxes, as seen in the in-situ detail image.

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Catalogue Raisonné: 90-99, Frayda Feldman and Jörg Schellmann
No condition report has been added for this lot. Please contact the specialist for further information.
  • Private Collection, Los Angeles Private collection, New York City
'Portraits of the 70s', Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY (1979)
  • Pickup Location: New York, USA
  • Shipping Dimensions: 36 x 36 in. (91.44 x 91.44 cm.)
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