See China in the 1980s Through the Eyes of Andy Warhol
Detail of Andy Warhol's 'Double Decker Bus', 1982 \ Courtesy Phillips
Over 200 photographs taken by the American pop artist, Andy Warhol
, during his pivotal trip to Asia, will go on auction in May. Ahead of the sale, the works have been included in a landmark exhibition, Warhol in China
, that brings Warhol’s unique view of China together in the Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong
where the artist stayed during his trip in the 80s.
From The Great Wall and Hong Kong harbour to statues of Mao and bellhops (hotel porters), Warhol captured a modern China amidst important change.
Andy Warhol, Andy Warhol at the Great Wall, 1982 Courtesy of Phillips
In the 1970s, Warhol started to paint Chairman Mao, a fixation that lasted over a decade, ‘I painted Mao about four hundred times. I used to see how many I could do in a day,’ the artist noted. Then 10 years after Nixon visited Beijing in 1972, Warhol made his seminal trip to Hong Kong and Beijing just as Deng Xiaoping began to open China to the global market.
Andy Warhol, The Great Wall of China, 1982-1987 Courtesy Andy Warhol Foundation and Phillips
Andy Warhol, Double Decker Bus, 1982 Courtesy Phillips
‘These candid shots are dynamic, exciting and fun but also weighty in their historical importance as Warhol was able to immortalise China during a transitional phase in the country’s history,’ said Jonathan Crockett, Head of 20th Century and Contemporary Art and Deputy Chairman for Phillips Asia.
Andy Warhol, Coiled Incense, 1982 Courtesy Phillips
Coming onto the market in their entirety for the first time, this phenomenal collection of black and white photographs captures China’s burgeoning economy through Warhol’s distinctive visual language of repetition and reproduction.
Andy Warhol, Waterfront Park, 1982 Courtesy Phillips
The photographs also reveal the American artist’s inquisitiveness for daily Chinese life and the country’s use of symbolism from the ever-present bicycles to the uniformity of Mao jackets.
© Andy Warhol / Courtesy of Phillips
See a selection of the exhibition and sale, below.
Andy Warhol, Chinese Bellhop, 1982-1987 Courtesy Phillips
Andy Warhol, Construction Site, 1982 Courtesy Phillips
Andy Warhol, Chinese Stone Lion, 1982-1987 Courtesy Phillips
Andy Warhol, Hong Kong Harbour (Boats), 1982 Courtesy Phillips
Andy Warhol, Andy Warhol, 1982 Courtesy Phillips
Andy Warhol, Great Wall, 1982 Courtesy Phillips
Andy Warhol, Hong Kong, 1982 Courtesy Phillips
Andy Warhol, Buffet Table, 1982 Courtesy Phillips
Andy Warhol, Hong Kong Harbour, 1982 Courtesy Phillips