A Warhol painting could fetch $200 million. What’s so special about it?


Subsequent 7 days an Andy Warhol silkscreen of Marilyn Monroe could turn into the most high priced 20th-century artwork to provide at auction. Projecting a sale selling price of $200 million, auction home Christie’s has when compared Warhol’s 1964 “Shot Sage Blue Marilyn” to da Vinci’s “Mona Lisa” and Botticelli’s “The Start of Venus,” contacting it “one of the best paintings of all time.”

Artwork critic Blake Gopnik informed Marketplace’s David Brancaccio that the portrait is essential, but for a various motive.

“Warhol had now accomplished his Marilyns two several years previously — so I really don’t feel you can connect with it modern in the standard perception, at minimum,” claimed Gopnik. “But it matters a full ton since by virtue of being a retread, it was an appropriation in the initial position. And that’s what really makes Warhol matter, this notion of appropriation.”

The subsequent is an edited transcript of the job interview.

David Brancaccio: I see the auction house is calling this an progressive portrait of Marilyn Monroe. No?

Blake Gopnik: Well, I guess you might call it that, other than for the actuality that Warhol experienced previously finished his Marilyns two a long time before, so I never feel you can call it revolutionary in the usual feeling, at the very least. He named these paintings, wherever he did retreads of his earlier, really impressive images, he named them “dead paintings.” So I consider that this is essentially a seriously great, important picture, and truly may well ought to have the $200 million dollars that Christie’s thinks it may possibly get — but I do not feel this portray matters for any of the good reasons that Christie’s is indicating. They’ve pulled out all the clichés: that it’s an “untouchable picture that transcends time and spot.” People are just the variety of clichés that Warhol just hated. He would have been appalled — not at the $200 million variety, but at all the clichés that have been pulled out for this lifeless portray, this retread. But it matters a entire good deal due to the fact by virtue of getting a retread, it was an appropriation in the to start with position. And that is what actually can make Warhol make a difference, this notion of appropriation.

Brancaccio: That is why the photo issues. But the retreading is during artwork, you’ve pointed this out. It is primarily almost everywhere.

Gopnik: Yeah, I make a claim — that, I guess, is a minimal little bit on the radical side — that appropriation is really at the coronary heart of the total Western idea of fantastic art. That it commences around 1500, when a bunch of persons mentioned: “You know these religious photographs, those people superb altar pieces that are intended to make sure you God? How about if we get them out of the religious context and just search at them simply because we’re interested in them, we want to chat about them, we just cannot determine them out?” Which is what great art is all about. So it starts off out at the pretty commencing of the modern-day Western tradition as remaining about appropriation. And that’s what Warhol latches on to and turns into sort of the coronary heart of his full practice as an artist. And that’s what would make him far more than his subject matter make a difference, far more than all the clichés about pop artwork. What seriously matters is his deep perception in appropriation, his deep perception in the retread.

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