Sotheby’s Prints & Multiples sale in London on 18 March 2014 will be headlined by complete sets and portfolios by Andy Warhol, Henri Matisse and Pablo Picasso, and two rare works by Edvard Munch.
Andy Warhol’s complete set of ten screenprints of Mao in colours from 1972 is estimated between £300,000 and £400,000. Warhol based his ten screenprints on the official portrait of the Chinese communist leader Mao Tse-Tung that was illustrated on the cover of the widely circulated 1966 publication Quotations from Chairman Mao Tse-Tung, also known as the Little Red Book. The brightly coloured, monumental portraits illustrate Warhol’s fascination with the clash of imagery between Communist propaganda and Western fashion kitsch.
Jazz, by Henri Matisse, is one of the most significant print series of the 20th century. Henri Matisse created Jazz in the final decade of his life. Confined to his bed due to ill health, he devised papiers découpésin order to continue working. This new and inventive technique proved so life-changing – and life-affirming – that Matisse abandoned painting altogether in favour of the cut-outs which, for him, definitively linked drawing and colour. The complete portfolio is estimated £120,000-180,000.
Picasso was in his early twenties and living in Montmartre, Paris when he created the Saltimbanque Suite. This famous series of 14 etchings and drypoints marks the passage from Picasso’s Blue period to his Rose period. Complete sets rarely come to auction. La suite des Saltimbanques, the complete set of 14 etchings and drypoints, is estimated £150,000-250,000