Queen of the Saleroom
Warhol's Elizabeth II Rules Bonhams Prints & Multiples Sale

LondonQueen Elizabeth II, a unique screenprint in colours by Andy Warhol (1928-1987), was the top lot of Bonhams' Prints & Multiples sale yesterday (Wednesday 29 June) at New Bond Street, London. The print, which was part of Warhol's 1985 Reigning Queens series, achieved an impressive £277,500, against an estimate of £120,000 - 180,000.

The 96-lot sale made a total of £2,125,511 with 88% sold by lot and 97% sold by value.

Laetitia Guillotin, Bonhams Head of Sale, commented: "We are delighted with the fantastic results of today's sale, which provided something for collectors of all tastes. In this year of the Platinum Jubilee, it is no surprise that a unique version of Warhol's Queen Elizabeth II screenprint, from outside the standard edition, particularly stood out to collectors to reign supreme."

Reigning Queens was the largest portfolio Warhol produced, and the last he completed before his untimely death in 1987. It contains screenprint portraits of the four ruling female monarchs of the day: Queen Elizabeth II, Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands, Queen Margrethe II of Denmark and Queen Ntombi Twala of Swaziland. Based on a photograph taken by Peter Grugeon released to celebrate Her Majesty's Silver Jubilee in 1977, Andy Warhol's Queen Elizabeth II gave The Queen a signature Warhol pop art makeover. Warhol was also well aware that his image of Queen Elizabeth II would be instantly recognizable, increasing his own fame by association – notably stating "I want to be as famous as The Queen of England".

Other highlights of the sale included:

Andy Warhol (1928-1987), Mick Jagger, from Mick Jagger Portfolio. Screenprint in colours, 1975, signed in felt-tip pen by Andy Warhol and Mick Jagger. Sold for £120,000, against an estimate of £40,000 - 60,000.

Banksy (born 1974), Banksquiat (Grey). Screenprint in colours, 2019. Sold for £101,100.

Damien Hirst (born 1965), The Elements (H6-6, H6-7, H6-8, H6-9). The complete set of four laminated giclée prints on aluminium panels, 2020. Sold for £78,420.

Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (1864-1901), Ambassadeurs: Aristide Bruant. Sold for £25,500.

Cyril Edward Power (1872-1951), The Merry-Go-Round. Sold for £48,180.


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