Andy Warhol and Jean-Michel Basquiat’s Collab Painting “Untitled” is Set for Auction

Andy Warhol and Jean-Michel Basquiat’s collaboration painting Untitled will be offered up for auction by Sothesby’s at the upcoming Contemporary Evening Auction in May. The piece is expected to fetch a price of around $18 million.

Pop culture icon Warhol and Neo-Expressionist artist Basquiat started their collaboration in 1983 and made around 150 pieces together in a two-year frame. Untitled was particularly notable entry in their join series due to its size, standing at 10 ft tall and 13 ft wide, and the fact that the artists didn’t work simultaneously on it.

According to Stohesby’s statement, Warhol started the painting by creating a number of sports motifs including baseball globes and tennis racket. Basquiat continued with the addition of addition of totemic heads, scribbles, and strips of color.

“Of all the Warhol-Basquiat works from this brief and fertile moment, Untitled stands out as one of the supreme examples, fully showcasing the range of their artistic powers,” said Lucius Elliott, Sotheby’s Head of Contemporary Marquee Auctions in New York. “The painting is a masterpiece of juxtaposition and contradiction: the cool, mechanical restraint of Warhol’s imagery, overlaid with Basquiat’s anarchic energy and freewheeling technique.”

Given its estimated price, Untitled is expected to become the most expensive piece of Warhol-Basquiat collection. This title currently belongs to 1985’s piece “Zenith,” which sold for $11.4 million in 2014.

Warhol and Basquiat ended their collaboration after their joint works were exhibited at New York’s Tony Shafrazi Gallery in 1985. The exhibition was widely panned by the critics and not a single piece was sold at the time.

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