ANDY WARHOL "PORTRAIT OF A LADY" DRAWING, 1955
One of the constants in Warhol's oeuvre are his depictions of elegant, glamorous women. In every era Warhol created images of diverse but striking women including Marilyn Monroe, Jackie O., Diana Ross and Karen Kain to mention a few.
Is this impeccable portrait of a society woman or perhaps an unidentified fashion model? Or a beauty from the artist's imagination?
Andy Warhol (1928-1987) had many muses; both real and imagined. In the 1950's he was an in-demand and celebrated illustrator working for New York's toniest publications (like Harper's Bazaar) and elegant shops (such as Bonwit Teller) in addition to many smaller independent fashion companies.
Warhol created drawings of clothes, accessories, and stylized beauties in a distinctively elegant but playful aesthetic. Drawings, such as this one, demonstrate that Warhol was an exceptional draftsman, and could render a distinct personality in a simple line drawing.
During this era, Warhol received numerous awards and accolades for his illustrations - yet found it difficult to surpass the designation of "commercial artist".
Until relatively recently, Warhol's early work, which primarily consists of drawings and lithographs, has been overshadowed by his work from the early 1960's. While Warhol's contribution to pop art, and its importance to art history, is indisputable, his early work is impressive, delightful and is finally getting the attention and scholarship it deserves. Hopefully future research will reveal who this woman was...or why Warhol was commissioned to create her.
This is a lovely example of Warhol's female portraiture and an essential part of his artistic evolution. As the Warhol market continues to gallop to a stratosphere beyond, there are fewer and fewer examples of unique, original works in circulation.
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Untitled "Portrait of a Lady"
USA, circa 1955
Original blue ink on paper
Stamped verso by the estate of Andy Warhol and the Andy Warhol Art Authentication Board, Inc. and numbered on the reverse.
Very good condition.
Provenance: The Estate of Andy Warhol
Note: This is a unique, original drawing by Andy Warhol. It is recorded in the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts. It will also be included in the future Andy Warhol Catalogue Raisonné that is currently being compiled by the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts.
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