When Bob and Jasper were mean to Andy; Swiss art to Texas; Lindemann's Condo; Clyfford Still's last hidden work unrolled; Art SG Brings Renfrew back in the fold
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The Worst of Warhol … Revalued?
The Telegraph takes a long tour of Andy Warhol’s pariah period in the 1980s when he was better known as a celebrity fixture either at Studio 54 or appearing on The Love Boat. The Telegraph rehashes a mid-1980s incident at the New York club Limelight when Warhol was jeered as he made his way through the club. Somewhat a prisoner of the persona he created during the Reagan era, some close followers of Warhol point out that he remained acutely aware of the work that he did that failed to live up to his ambitions. He was even making plans for a Worst of Warhol exhibition when he died.
As the public market for Warhol’s work cools (there are still reports of strong sales privately), the work Warhol made during his last decade might hold the key to the next phase of his auction market. Auctions are about price discovery. Work that is hard to value needs to be sold publicly so prices can be a established. According to the Telegraph, Jeffrey Deitch believes works from the Rorschach, Oxidation, Shadow and Camouflage series are undervalued:
- Some of Warhol’s surviving inner circle believe he still hasn’t received the credit he deserves, particularly for his later work. Earlier this year, one of Warhol’s 1978 Oxidation Paintings series, created by the artist and assistants urinating on chemically treated canvases, sold for $3,375,000 at Sotheby’s in New York. Shiner was delighted. ‘The Baltimore Museum of Art decided to sell works of white male artists in order to buy works by women and artists of colour. What’s more phenomenal than that?’ [Jeffrey] Deitch, conversely, believes the sale is a scandal. ‘The establishment doesn’t fully appreciate those works,’ he says. ‘I was very surprised to see the museum deaccession that painting. It’s shocking. The work Warhol was creating in the last stage of his career, while engaging with Basquiat, Haring, [Julian] Schnabel and [Francesco] Clemente – all of whom saw him as their most important inspiration – found him exploring new approaches to abstraction. The Rorschach, Oxidation, Camouflage and Shadows paintings are among the most brilliant works he did.’
That Time Bob & Jasper Laughed at Andy Warhol
W’s story about the Andy Warhol retrospective at the Whitney focuses on the period when Warhol was crafting his persona as a fine artist. Already an exceptionally successful commercial artist, Warhol tried to find a path towards getting other artists to take him seriously. His first attempt provoked Robert Rauschenberg and Jasper Johns to fits of laughter:
- “[Warhol’s] first attempts to move into the realm of fine art were not successful. In the mid-1950s, Warhol was commissioned for the first time by the department store Bonwit Teller to create displays for its windows on Fifth Avenue. His installation appeared next to that of Robert Rauschenberg and Jasper Johns, artists just as unknown as Warhol, who worked together under the pseudonym of Matson Jones. Hoping that the visibility would lead to important gallery exhibitions, Warhol used a photograph of a man in drag posed as a fashion model. Even other gay artists were horrified. As Warhol later recalled, ‘Bob and Jasper came and looked at what I was doing and laughed at me. They pointed their fingers and laughed—they were so mean.’”
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