It’s probably a well known fact that Andy Warhol and his Polaroid cameras got along really well. Images of Warhol with his instant companions are not too rare and this certainly comes as no surprise from the king of consumerism and instant gratification himself.
What came as a surprise to me, however, was getting to know that Warhol used his Polaroid portraits as the basis for his well known silk-screens. I discovered this via an article on Artinfo.com. The article per se was not about Warhol’s process of creation, but rather, about someone else’s very foolish act.
Ryan O’Neal, Farrah Fawcett’s long time partner, was discovered to be harboring a missing $30 million portrait of his beloved executed by Warhol. The silkscreen portrait, based on a Polaroid by Warhol, was hanging over his bed apparently.
Although O’Neal was Fawcett’s partner for 30 years, she left him nothing in her will. The Charlie’s Angels star even left her entire art collection to the University of Texas, her alma mater, instead.
However, when the institution began assembling Fawcett’s holdings after her death just two years ago, it was unable to track down one of the two portraits of her made by Warhol in 1980; reportedly the most valuable works in her collection. Luckily, it has now been found!
Although the silkscreen portrait of Fawcett might be worth $30 million, the Polaroid which served as the basis for the silkscreen portraits was sold at Sotheby’s Polaroid Collection sale for $43,750 last summer. Not too shabby for an instant, right?