ANDY WARHOL (1928-1987)
Muhammad Ali
the complete set of four screenprints in colours, 1978, on Strathmore Bristol paper, each signed in ink, numbered 39/150 (there were also ten artist's proofs), published by Andy Warhol Enterprises, Inc., New York, with their copyright inkstamp on the reverse
Image & Sheet 1015 x 760 mm. (each)
Sotheby's New York, 9 November 1997, lot 1338.
Acquired from the above by the present owner.
Feldman & Schellmann II.179-182
Warhol initially photographed Muhammad Ali as part of his Athletes series from 1977. This group of works featured other famous athletes from the period such as Jack Nicklaus, Pele and Kareem Abdul Jabbar and was initiated by the famous West Coast art collector and sports fanatic Richard Weisman. Sports stars were a natural progression for Warhol and his preoccupation with fame and celebrity status. Warhol noted: “I really got to love the athletes because they are the really big stars”.

During this period Warhol travelled to Ali’s training camp Fighter’s Heaven in Pennsylvania to photograph and interview him with Weisman, his business manager Fred Hughes, and the author Victor Bockris. Warhol’s images from this photography session capture the essence of Ali, with his strength and focus highlighted in this composition’s clenched fists and fixed stare.

Sale Room Notice
Please note this lot will be transferred to an offsite warehouse after the sale. Please see the Storage and Collection pages in the Conditions of Sale for more information about storage charges and collection details.
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