Asset Class: Invest in Andy Warhol

Orangutan (F. & S. II. 299) by Andy WarholOrangutan (F. & S. II. 299) © Andy Warhol, 1983
Rebecca Marsham

Rebecca Marsham, Sales Director[email protected]

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Andy Warhol

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The Andy Warhol print market has flourished in the last 24 months and has proven to be resilient despite economic instability. An Andy Warhol print could be one of the best investment opportunities for you if you are looking to move into alternative asset classes. Our most recent report shows that the Warhol market comes out top in terms of market growth in size and his prints are set to steadily increase in value as we enter 2023. In this article we look at the Warhol print market data in detail to help you with your investment decisions.

Download our complete 2023 Print Market Report here, to explore expert opinions on the prints and multiples market over the last five years.

Are Andy Warhol prints a good investment?

The market for paintings and prints from Warhol’s portfolio has boomed this year. In the wake of the record-breaking sale of Shot Sage Blue Marilyn in May 2022, Warhol’s prints, notably the Marilyns, have been steadily increasing in value.

35 years after his death Warhol continues to break records. In 2020, when other artists’ markets such as Banksy were exploding, Warhol’s dipped. However, this dip was to prove only temporary. Always ahead of his time, series like Endangered Species, Ladies & Gentlemen and Ads were arguably, until recently, under-appreciated. The growth in average sale price across Warhol’s portfolio has risen exponentially over the last 24 months, as works such as these portfolios have started to receive overdue recognition.

Warhol’s print market size (£GBP) has a compounded annual growth rate of 27% over the last 5 years. In 2022, there has been only a 13% increase vs 2017 in the volume of transactions - a compounded annual growth rate of 2.5% - meaning the majority of growth has come through the average appreciation in value of the works themselves. This is reflected in 2022’s average sale price being 194% higher than 2017 - a compounded annual growth rate of 24%.

Andy Warhol Prints vs Gold, Oil, Property, Stocks & Shares

Our data shows that an Andy Warhol print could be a viable investment to diversify typical investment portfolios, consistently showing higher returns over a 10 year period in comparison to gold, oil, property and UK shares. The Warhol market overall may be a better place to make money, especially when considering the cost of storing a print in comparison to the upkeep of any property investment portfolio. Some areas like the oil market are no match for the potential returns to be made in the Warhol print market right now, and the same goes for equities.

What’s driving growth in the Warhol market? Despite a 36% dip in the size of the market and 16% dip in ASP during the first year of COVID in 2020, a major correction occurred in 2021 with a 52% increase in ASP. In one possible interpretation, a spooked economy significantly undervalued what was coming to market.

One noteworthy driver in Warhol performance gains from 2021 has been the demand, availability and competition from collectors for complete sets. The sales value of Warhol’s complete sets grew 175% between 2020 and 2021.

The only area that currently outstrips the Warhol print market is Amazon. This is not surprising given the domineering position of Amazon in the e-commerce market, and its strategy of acquiring brands in other markets.

Andy Warhol vs Amazon Stock
Andy Warhol vs GoldAndy Warhol vs Gold
Andy Warhol vs OilAndy Warhol vs Oil
Andy Warhol vs PropertyAndy Warhol vs Property
Andy Warhol vs UK SharesAndy Warhol vs UK Shares

How much do I need to spend on an Andy Warhol print?

The cost of a Warhol print depends on many factors, including its physical size, when the series was made, its rarity and edition size, as well as its condition and provenance (such notable previous ownership or if it was exhibited in a notable exhibition). But the average sales price is going up: from £49,529 in 2018 to £53,176 in 2019, to £44,744 in 2020, to £68,179 in 2021 and £114,243 in 2022 – an 67.6% increase in average sale price on last year.

It must be noted that these average sales prices are largely skewed by the sales of complete sets in 2022. The average sales price compounded annual growth rate of 26% for complete sets outperforms the average for individual prints at 15%. For complete sets where there is data available for a five year comparison, the skew of distribution for % returns over that period was 0.12%. This indicates a relatively balanced spread of performance across the sets portfolio towards the positive side of the average.

Are there Andy Warhol series that are more investible?

For collectors and investors alike, Warhol's complete print sets are considered the the most investible of his print portfolios. Since 2017, complete sets have increasingly driven Warhol's total sales value. In 2021, complete sets accounted for 43% of total sales value in 201, but reached 50% in 2022. The incredible performance of these sets is owed, in part, to the lower price point of Warhol's serialised prints (as opposed to his unique paintings). Deemed to be a more accesible way to enter this hot market, Warhol’s complete sets offer an exciting opportunity for collectors.

The top performing set of Warhol’s oeuvre is unsurprisingly his Campbell's Soup II series; emblematic of Warhol and the entire ethos of Pop Art. Between 2017-2022, the complete set has increased in value by approximately 310%.

Campbell’s Soup I is the next best performing set by Warhol. These works are enduring and visually striking, so it is no surprise that Campbell's Soup are the two most investable print sets in our Market Report. Campbell's Soup I has grown in value by approx. 290% in the past five years.

Andy Warhol Complete Sets Average Sales Price 2017-2022 (£GBP)Andy Warhol Complete Sets Average Sales Price 2017-2022 (£GBP)
Andy Warhol Complete Sets 2017 vs 2022 % Growth (£GBP) Andy Warhol Complete Sets 2017 vs 2022 % Growth (£GBP)

Requesting a valuation of your Andy Warhol print.

You can request a zero obligation, free valuation from our specialist team, no matter when you’re looking to sell your Andy Warhol print. Selling online increases the chance of your print reaching a global audience. MyArtBroker’s global network consists of over 30,000 collectors buying and selling works daily, as well as dealers, galleries and independent experts.

MyArtBroker charges a 0% fee to the seller. We offer the flexibility of selling online and the expertise of an auction house. Your personal broker will market your print to our global network of buyers, when you want and at the price you want to receive. We will vet potential interest to ensure they are genuine. In most cases, you can keep your print until you agree to a sale and, after the sale takes place, we will cover the cost of shipping. Get in touch with us if you are interested and we will talk you through the process.

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