Marilyn’s painting tragically links the actress to Warhol

The most expensive work in the world. It changes from time to time, but when they bring together the names of Andy Warhol and Marilyn Monroe, two pop icons, we can be sure they will raise the challenge. And this week, the painting dubbed Shot Sage Blue Marilyn goes up for auction, with Christie’s estimating that it will raise more than $200 million for the piece. If sold, this makes it the most expensive 20th-century artwork ever sold at auction.

The most expensive work in the world. It changes from time to time, but when they bring together the names of Andy Warhol and Marilyn Monroe, two pop icons, we can be sure they will raise the challenge. And this week, the painting dubbed Shot Sage Blue Marilyn goes up for auction, with Christie’s estimating that it will raise more than $200 million for the piece. If sold, this makes it the most expensive 20th-century artwork ever sold at auction.

The painting is part of the collection of five 40-inch canvases, painted by Warhol, in 1964. Of these, the blue version is considered by specialists as the best of all the paintings that embodied the late American actress. Warhol’s “Marilyns” became so iconic quickly that three years later he released a set of 10, sold together for $500 which was later split so the prints could be sold individually.

One of the reasons for the “fame” of the paintings is tragic. When showing the five original pieces, performance artist Dorothy Podber asked to “shoot” the four paintings leaning against the wall, immediately pulling a gun from her bag, shooting a bullet between Marilyn Monroe’s eyes in one of the paintings. Eventually, a stunned Warhol restored them to varying degrees, and the paintings became known as “Shot Marilyns”. All the controversy contributed to increasing the value of the paintings, and in 1968, at the same location, Valerie Solanas repeated the gesture, but this time it was Warhol who was shot, almost dying and never fully recovering his health after the attack.

In the year the sixty-year anniversary of Marilyn’s death, with the great documentary about Andy Warhol’s diaries on Netflix, curiosity about the two is even greater. Let’s hope for the record tomorrow!

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