Market Watch Andy Warhol: Top 10 Most Investable Prints

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Rebecca Marsham

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Andy Warhol

Andy Warhol

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In 2023, Andy Warhol exhibited a strong performance in the print market, showcasing resilience despite a slight downturn of -28% in sales value compared to 2022. However, there was a notable 9% increase in the number of lots sold, reflecting ongoing interest in Warhol's prints amid economic challenges. The year witnessed significant sales of seven figures and heightened demand for complete sets, while Trial Proofs (TPs) continued to command attention and set new records during auctions. This underscores Warhol's enduring appeal and the competitive investment potential of his prints in the art market landscape.

Read MyArtBroker's 2024 Andy Warhol Investment Guide.

Complete Sets

Warhol's compete sets stand out as unparalleled rarities in his print portfolio. In 2023 the hammer price of complete sets in Warhol's print market amounted to £14.2 million hammer accounting for 38% of his print market share.

Here are the top 10 most investable complete sets according to our 2023 Market Report:

1.

Endangered Species

The complete collection of Warhol's Endangered Species (1983) made a notable appearance at Christie's November marquee sale in 2023. This set, which rarely surfaces in the market and has consistently emerged once a year since 2021, lived up to the high expectations in the final round of post-war and contemporary sales for the year. With immense anticipation, the ten iconic screenprints, designated as edition 83 out of 150, achieved a sale price of £2.8 million. This sale not only marked the second-highest price ever attained for this collection but also secured its position as Warhol's highest-selling complete set of prints in 2023. The same editioned set was originally sold in 1991 for a modest $45,000, underscoring an astonishing 76-fold increase in value over the years.

2.

Flowers (complete set)

Warhol's Flowers series, a collection of ten iconic prints in various hues, emerged as an extension of his Flower paintings. Based on a magazine depiction of hibiscus flowers against a grassy backdrop, these prints challenged traditional notions of ”fine art.’’ Their continued popularity is evident, with complete sets in matching edition numbers becoming a significant trend. In April, a full set sold for £1,888,053 (with fees), setting an auction record and establishing itself as Warhol's top-selling print in 2023.

3.

Campbell's Soup I

Crafted in 1962, Warhol's Campbell's Soup Cans captured consumerism, replicating tin packaging with his screenprinting technique. Debuted at Ferus Gallery, it faced criticism, but Warhol embraced banality. Initially unsold, owner Irving Blum repurchased the series, preserving its legacy. In 1996, he sold it to MoMA for $15 million (USD). This work epitomises Warhol's brilliance, turning the mundane into timeless art. In 2023, trends show collectors, both young and established, invest in familiar names and relatable imagery. Following the Flower trend, Campbell's Soup I (complete set) (1968) set a record, selling for £1,522,170 (with fees) in March, ranking as Warhol's second top-selling print in 2023.

4.

Mao (complete set)

Warhol was renowned for celebrity portraits, often of friends and controversial figures, unafraid to convey political messages. In 1972, amid United States President Nixon's visit to China, he created Mao, merging celebrity interest with political commentary. Fascinated by Chinese propaganda and the lack, or prohibited amount, of creativity, Warhol made this portrait. Despite controversy, complete sets like this break competitive prices in the market. This Mao set sold for £718,762 (with fees) in March, ranking third among Warhol's top-selling prints in 2023.

5.

Goethe (complete set)

Warhol depicted the iconic German philosopher, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, in these four colour-variant screen prints from 1982. Warhol appropriated a famous image by Johan Tischbein for this series, with only four distinct colourways, each limited to 100 editions, making them rare finds in the secondary market. In 2023, individual prints from this series started to reemerge, showcasing the enduring appeal of Warhol's extensive body of work. Once again, a complete set, Goethe (1982) made it to Warhol's top-selling works for 2023, fetching £604,800 (with fees) in March, marking its sole appearance in 2023 YTD.

Ten Portraits Of Jews Of The Twentieth Century (complete set) (TP) by Andy Warhol - MyArtBroker Ten Portraits Of Jews Of The Twentieth Century (complete set) (TP) © Andy Warhol 1980
6.

Ten Portraits Of Jews Of The Twentieth Century (complete set) (TP)

Warhol's Ten Portraits Of Jews Of The Twentieth Century (complete set) (1980) surfaced as Trial Proofs (TP) in March, presenting unique colourways and exceptional rarity in the market. Paying homage to prominent Jewish figures including Albert Einstein, Sigmund Freud, Gertrude Stein and others, this series is a tribute to the 20th-century Jewish legacy. Complete sets of these works are incredibly scarce, appearing only seven times, making this sale at £585,966 (with fees) in March 2023 a testament to their desirability. This set ranks among Warhol's top 10 selling prints for 2023, underscoring the growing demand for comprehensive collections.

7.

Moonwalk Suite

Another important work from Warhol's oeuvre is Moonwalk Suite (1987). These two screenprints are appropriations of Neil Armstrong's iconic photograph capturing American Astronaut Buzz Aldrin's first steps on the moon's surface in 1989. With its blend of iconography and historical significance, this artwork appeals to a wide range of collectors, both newcomers and seasoned enthusiasts. This set made triple appearance in 2023 breaking it's record high with each consecutive sale. First, it achieved £441,000 at Christie's in September. Later, in October, it resurfaced at Sotheby's fetching £522,223 and then breaking that amount at Christie's realising £571,627. This achievement maintained its position as the 7th highest-selling work among Warhol's complete sets in 2023.

8.

Queen Elizabeth II (complete set)

Certainly, one of Warhol's most iconic pieces hails from his Reigning Queens series, featuring four vibrant portraits of Queen Elizabeth II in various lively hues. Warhol, like many, was captivated by the Royal Monarchy, and in celebrating the Queen's unparalleled legacy, he carved out his own enduring legacy. In these portraits, the Queen of England meets the King of Pop, a fusion of regal charm and contemporary allure. Following her posthumous legacy, these portraits have gained even greater significance and desirability in 2023. Individually, works from this series have been trending throughout the year, and in June 2023, this complete set fetched an impressive £557,572 (with fees), securing its place among Warhol's top-selling prints for the year. Despite never having met the Queen in person, one can envision these two legendary figures sharing a tea, prompting the intriguing question: If Warhol were still alive today, which member of the monarchy would he choose to paint next?

9.

Campbell's Soup II (complete set) II

Another exceptional complete set that made its appearance in the market is Warhol's Campbell's Soup II. Produced in 1969 as an extension and separate series from his original Campbell's Soup I (1968) this set showcases bolder and brighter colours. Warhol's approach involved adding hyper-realistic details such as shadows and refracted light on the tin lids, giving each can a unique and slightly different appearance from the others. Moreover, the inclusion of enticing slogans and catchphrases like ’’Hot Dog Bean,” ’’Scotch Broth,“ and ‘‘Oyster Stew“, aimed to attract consumers to the products, add a playful character to each work. The complete set of these works surfaced at Christie's New York November marquee sales, achieving an impressive sale price of £516,272 and securing its position among Warhol's top-selling pieces for 2023.

10.

Grapes (complete set)

Warhol's Grapes (1979 )showcases various grape varieties in six distinct screenprints. Warhol's unique approach involves using bold, colourblock applications contrasting deep blues and purples. Straying from traditional still-life representation, Warhol presents the subject in loud pop art aesthetics. This set, which has become increasingly rare, has demonstrated appreciating value and resurfaced at Phillips' October auction in 2023, achieving an impressive sale price of £251,614.

Individual Prints


While Warhol's complete sets represent a significant portion of his market share, individual prints remain in high demand with successful sales. In 2023, a striking trend emerged with increased demand for Warhol's TPs, unique prints featuring distinct colourways that consistently set new records for individual prints. TPs accounted for 9% of Warhol's print market share in 2023. Additionally, other top-performing individual prints hailed from iconic series such as Marilyn and Reigning Queen.

Here are the top 10 most investable individual prints according to our 2023 Market Report:

Superman (TP) by Andy Warhol - MyArtBroker Superman (TP) (F. & S. II.260) © Andy Warhol 1981
1.

Superman (TP)

Throughout 2023, Warhol's Superman (1981) print lived up to the legendary status of its superhero subject by making multiple appearances at auctions. In September, this artwork emerged as a Trial Proof (TP) at Sotheby's September Prints & Multiples sale, featuring a unique and vibrant colour palette where the superhero soars against a vivid yellow backdrop. It achieved an impressive sale price of £317,500, establishing a new record for this print. Another TP made its debut at Sotheby's London October Marquee sales, surpassing its previous record set just one month earlier by 1.6 times and achieving a remarkable sale of £508,000. This print ranked as the top-selling individual work by Warhol in 2023.

2.

Queen Elizabeth II Royal Edition (F. & S. II.334A)

The Queen Elizabeth II Royal Edition (1985) gained immense popularity in the market this year. Warhol creatively reimagined Elizabeth II's official portrait from her 1977 silver jubilee, infusing vibrant colour blocking and his unique drawings to accentuate the monarch's jewellery. This Royal Edition includes added diamond dust, enhancing its opulence. This artwork made two appearances in 2023, both during September auctions. At Christie's, it achieved a groundbreaking sale, reaching £378,000 (with fees), setting an auction record for this print and establishing itself as the highest-selling individual print among Warhol's works for 2023.

Superman (TP) by Andy Warhol - MyArtBroker Image © Sotheby's / Superman (TP) © Andy Warhol 1981
3.

Superman (TP)

Taking the third spot among Warhol's top investment-worthy prints in 2023 is once again Superman. This iconic print, presented as a TP at Sotheby's Prints & Multiples September sale, features a striking yellow background. Numbered 19/20, this piece fetched £317,500 including fees, setting an auction record for the print at that time. However, emphasising demand for this print, this record was short-lived, as another TP in blue was offered at Sotheby's October marquee sale just one month later, surpassing the previous record.

4.

Queen Elizabeth II Royal Edition (F. & S. II.335A)

Another Royal Edition of Warhol's portrait featuring Queen Elizabeth II in a distinct plum colour scheme emerged in 2023, firmly establishing itself among Warhol's highest-selling artworks. This print showcases the monarch against a rich purple backdrop, adorned with diamond dust, and was sold early in the year at Phillips in January for £289,800 (with fees), evidencing the enduring popularity of these works.

5.

Queen Elizabeth II (F. & S. II.335)

Emerging as a favoured colour scheme, this vibrant purple regular edition print featuring Queen Elizabeth II has also secured its spot among Warhol's best-selling prints for 2023. As highlighted in our Ultimate Print Market report, this artwork has experienced remarkable value growth of around 480% since 2017. We also noted that the ASP of Warhol's Queen Elizabeth portraits was anticipated to rise as we progress into 2023, a prediction that has indeed come true. These pieces have enjoyed significant triumph, with this specific print in the purple palette fetching £263,171 at Christie's and mentioned in our April auction report.

6.

Queen Elizabeth II (F. & S. II.337A)

Demonstrating the enduring appeal of the late monarch, Queen Elizabeth II (F. & S. II.337A), set against a regal blue backdrop, fetched £262,882 including fees at a Heffel Online Auction in Canada. This sale marked the third instance of a regular editioned print of this artwork appearing on the market, the first since 2021, and it achieved a record price for this edition. Notably, this sale occurred just over a year after her passing, underscoring the continued reverence for Queen Elizabeth II's legacy even in international boarders.

7.

Marilyn (F. & S. II.24)

Exemplifying a fusion of history and iconography, Warhol's Marilyn prints stand out for their enduring allure, capturing the essence of the ultimate Hollywood celebrity. She embodies beauty, glamour, and tragedy, making these prints highly coveted. In 2023, Marilyn prints have experienced a notable surge in demand, and this specific portrait, rendered in a striking monochromatic tone, has secured its place among Warhol's best-selling individual prints, selling for £254,000 in March.

Buffalo Nickel (F. & S. II.374) (TP) by Andy Warhol - MyArtBrokerImage © Christie's / Buffalo Nickel (F. & S. II.374) (TP) © Andy Warhol 1986
8.

Buffalo Nickel (F. & S. II.374) (TP)

Continuing their dominance in 2023, TPs played a significant role in Warhol's thriving print performance. During the October print sales at Christie's New York, Buffalo Nickel (TP) (1986) emerged from the recently trending Cowboys and Indians series, which had garnered enthusiastic bidding among collectors throughout the year. This particular work, which hadn't appeared on the auction block in nearly a decade, achieved a remarkable sale price of £228,651, setting both a new record and a higher benchmark value for its investment status.

9.

Queen Elizabeth II (F. & S. II.337)

Unsurprisingly, Queen Elizabeth II makes a triumphant return to Warhol's top-performing prints in 2023 with her portrait set against a blue background. This particular colour scheme was absent from the market between 2020 and 2022 but experienced a resurgence in appearance in 2022 and fetched £228,600 (with fees) in March 2023.

Details Of Renaissance Paintings (Sandro Botticelli, Birth Of Venus, 1482) (TP) by Andy Warhol - MyArtBroker Details Of Renaissance Paintings (Sandro Botticelli, Birth Of Venus, 1482) (TP) © Andy Warhol 1984
10.

Details Of Renaissance Paintings (Sandro Botticelli, Birth Of Venus, 1482) (TP)

In the September sales, a distinctive version of Details Of Renaissance Paintings (Sandro Botticelli, Birth Of Venus, 1482) (1984) surfaced as a Trial Proof (TP), featuring a unique pink and blue colourway that bestowed a nymph-like aura upon Venus. While several colour variations of this artwork appeared in 2023, this particular TP outperformed the rest, establishing a new benchmark for its value. The piece was sold for £228,600 (with fees), emphasising the sought-after appeal of Warhol's female portraits.

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