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Warhol’s Marilyn Monroe Silkscreen Painting Sells for $195 Million

The buyer is a prominent art dealer from the US.




Warhol’s Marilyn Monroe Silkscreen Painting Sells for $195 Million
Credit: Christie’s

A famed silkscreen portrait of Marilyn Monroe by Andy Warhol was sold for $195 million, making it the most expensive painting from the 20th century to sell at auction, Guinness World Records writes.

“Shot Sage Blue Marilyn” was created in 1964, two years after Monroe’s death. The buyer is Larry Gagosian, an American art dealer who owns the eponymously named chain of art galleries.

There are five such portraits in the “Shot Marilyn” series. Auction house Christie’s notes the pieces were produced with a “more refined and time-intensive screen printing technique” that Warhol developed in 1964, a process differing from the “mass production he was best known for.” After completing the series, he abandoned the technique on account of its difficulty.

As for the inspiration behind the name of the Shot Marilyn series, Guinness explains:

Four of these five portraits became the Shot Marilyns after being shot by Dorothy Podber, who was visiting Warhol’s studio as a friend of a mutual friend. Dorothy allegedly asked Warhol if she could shoot the recently-completed paintings, which were stacked against one another. Warhol agreed, under the impression that Dorothy was going to snap some photographs.

Instead, she pulled out a small revolver from her purse and shot a bullet through the stack of four paintings, creating a hole in between Marilyn’s eyebrows. The fifth portrait escaped this fate as it was not in the stack at the time. Despite Warhol’s best efforts to paint over the damage, the bullet hole in each canvas is still faintly visible, undoubtedly contributing to Shot Sage Blue Marilyn’s record-breaking price tag.


Read more at Guinness World Records.



Let’s Talk About It

Creating a More Diverse and Inclusive Screen Printing Industry

LET’S TALK About It: Part 3 discusses how four screen printers have employed people with disabilities, why you should consider doing the same, the resources that are available, and more. Watch the live webinar, held August 16, moderated by Adrienne Palmer, editor-in-chief, Screen Printing magazine, with panelists Ali Banholzer, Amber Massey, Ryan Moor, and Jed Seifert. The multi-part series is hosted exclusively by ROQ.US and U.N.I.T.E Together. Let’s Talk About It: Part 1 focused on Black, female screen printers and can be watched here; Part 2 focused on the LGBTQ+ community and can be watched here.

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