Andy Warhol



Andy Warhol began using the big-shot Polaroid camera in 1971 and continued using it religiously until his death in 1987. Despite the camera being discontinued in 1973, he continued to use it to capture the actors, artists, dancers, politicians, socialites, and Factory members of his world. 

Frequently, Warhol's Polaroids were used as preparatory works for his iconic silkscreen portraits or other artworks. They also revealed his immediate personal vision functioning as a chronicle of his surroundings and social life. 

Beginning with his "Death and Disasters" series in the early 1960s, Warhol had a long-stemming, existential fascination with violence. Through this and subsequent series (notably "Knives and Guns" in the 1980s), the artist documents crisis while highlighting the (American) media's obsession with the spectacle of crime, death and punishment.

"Pistol" stems from the "Knives and Guns" era, most likely as a reference or study. Presented with authority, the image features the profile of a New England holster pistol, a model that dates back to 1815. While Warhol was most often obsessed with the culture of his day, he was simultaneously a student and collector of the past. In 1986, for example, he released the "Cowboys and Indians" portfolio which featured historical figures from the 19th century. 

This work is an important example that interweaves Warhol's core themes of culture, commodification, and perhaps on a subconscious level, personal anxieties. Click here to see another comparable pistol Polaroid. 

As the Warhol market continues to gallop to a stratosphere beyond, there are fewer and fewer examples of unique, original works in circulation.

Questions about this piece? Contact us or call +1.416.704.1720.

Or visit our Toronto gallery on Thursdays or by appointment.

Untitled "Pistol"

USA, 1981

Unique polaroid print

Embossed signature / copyright

Estate of Andy Warhol stamp verso 

3.5"H 4.25"W (work)

Traces of previous adhesive verso.

Overall very good condition.

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Occasionally we will recommend that an artwork be removed from its frame for shipping. Larger framed works are typically framed with plexiglass. We export over 80% of what we sell, so we are comfortable shipping anywhere. 

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