Andy Warhol: ‘Grace Kelly’, 1984, F&S II.305, silkscreen, hand signed and numbered in pencil. Printer Rupert Jasen Smith, New York. Publisher Institute of Contemporary Art, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania with the consent of the Princess Grace Foundation (U.S.A.) New York. Andy Warhol Prints Catalogue Raisonne 1962-1987 Feldman/Schellmann Fourth Edition II.305, edition of 225, Silkscreen on Lenox Museum Board, 40″ x 32″ (101.6 cm x 81.3 cm). Price upon request.
About this Artwork
Of his silkscreens, Warhol has said “the reason I’m painting this way is that I want to be a machine, and I feel that whatever I do and do machine-like is what I want to do.” Indeed, machine-like precision and mimicry appear repeatedly in works of this medium. The screenprinting process was a variation of stenciling. Warhol had a streamlined process in producing silk screen prints. First, he laid a photograph on to the mesh of a silk screen. Afterwards, he passed an ink-covered squeegee over the mesh. The ink would pass through the mesh and impress a print of the image onto the canvas underneath. The choice of ink depended on the intended composition of the final product. Warhol was able to apply multiple colors to create a layering effect, thus a different color composition could be made each time. He used a variety of canvases and papers.Warhol’s best known silk screen prints include his iconic portfolio of Marilyn Monroe: Marilyn Monroe (Marilyn), 1967 and Elizabeth Taylor (Colored Liz), 1963, Grace Kelly. Producing art in a systematic manner similar to an assembly line, Warhol gave rise to series or portfolios of his beloved celebrities. Even today, these massively recognizable images serve as a beacon of popular culture.
About Andy Warhol
The American artist and filmmaker Andy Warhol was born Andrew Warhola in 1928 and died in 1987. Warhol first found success as an award-winning commercial artist in New York. He soon put the commercial techniques he learned as an illustrator to work in his now-famous studio, dubbed the “Factory.” Appropriately enough, the artist once said, “I want to be a machine, ” reiterating the commercial, serial themes displayed in his paintings. Surrounding himself with a notorious coterie of assistants – from drifters and junkies to musicians and “poor little rich kids” – Warhol installed himself in his Factory, which itself quickly became New York’s most famous counter-culture nucleus. Ghostly pale and silver-wigged, Andy Warhol has become an icon himself, an impenetrable enigma who became one of the most singularly identifiable figures of the turbulent sixties. And while Warhol’s work may be best known for its stark reflections of popular and commercial culture, the artist did not hesitate to explore some of the more sinister traits of his era – from war and criminality. His grainy images of highway accidents and his serial panels of the handgun or the electric chair seem to drown emotion while at the same time recovering some of the shock power lost in the media’s trivialization of disaster. Warhol’s work has been called both naive and sophisticated, thought-provoking and mindless, superficial and profound, and the furor he created refuses to die down – more than a decade after the artist’s death.