ANDY WARHOL "BOB" DRAWING, 1955

Andy Warhol (1928-1987) is perhaps the most influential and valuable American artist of the 20th century. While he is renowned for his iconic Pop art portraits, Caviar20 has been exploring and offering his inimitable works on paper from the 1950's. We believe this is an important, and for the time being, accessible and under-appreciated part of his legacy.  

During the 1950's Warhol established his reputation in New York City as an illustrator for numerous fashion publications and businesses. His succinct line drawings were modern and gentle, realized with a brave yet delicate gay sensibility. 

The images he created "off the clock" from his fashion commissions were romantic sketches, day-dreams of crushes, hunks and friends. His 1956 exhibition, Studies for a Boy Book, was a commercial failure because of the queer and erotic subject-matter. Despite the rejection, Warhol would continue to create drawings, especially of men until the early 1960's. 

During these early years Warhol had many muses; both real and imagined. “Bob” is one of many works where the subject’s identity is left to our imagination. Yet this man is realized with a manicured hair-do and is set in a domestic or retail setting. Warhol portrays the delicate profile of this man with a slightly suspicious look in his eyes. Is this character cruising or trying to catch a glimpse at something he shouldn't be staring at?

This original work is a prime example of the artist's skill in capturing subtle human character and emotion...with an undeniable Queer sensibility. Another reminder that Warhol was both an exceptional draftsman and a gay pioneer in the visual arts. 

In recent years there has been new wave of scholarship and commercial interest in the early work created prior to Pop Art. Taschen, the legendary art book publisher, released Andy Warhol: Love, Sex & Desire which celebrates his drawings of the male form - and inspired a new generation of collectors and curators to re-examine this material. 

As the Warhol market continues to accelerate, there are fewer examples of unique, original works in circulation.

Questions about this piece? Contact us or call +1.416.704.1720

Untitled "Bob" 

USA, circa 1955

Original black ink on paper 

 17"H 14"W

Stamped verso by the estate of Andy Warhol and the Andy Warhol Art Authentication Board, Inc. 

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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