This estimate blends recent public auction records with our own private sale data and network demand.
Signed Print Edition of 60
H 102cm x W 102cm
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Toni Clayton, American Pop & Modern Specialist
Printed in 1985, Beethoven (F. & S. II.393) is a screen print by Andy Warhol that captures his keen interest in celebrities and icons of popular culture. The print features an image of the famous composer Ludwig van Beethoven rendered in an uncharacteristic blend of dark, cold colours. Beethoven’s white collar stands out against his dark grey face, which accentuates his stern and serious gaze. Warhol uses a layering technique to superimpose the sheet music of Beethoven’s renowned composition, Moonlight Sonata, over the portrait, highlighting the composer's musical talents and worldwide notoriety.
Beethoven(F. & S. II.393) is one of four screen prints in Warhol’s Beethoven series, produced by the artist shortly before his death in 1987. This print has a more sombre tone than the prints in the series, privileging cold colours over bright and vibrant ones.
Taking a classical composer as the subject matter of this series departs from Warhol’s frequent depiction of movie stars, such as Marilyn Monroe and Elizabeth Taylor. Beethoven was, however, an incredibly popular and well-known composer and in rendering him in this screen print, Warhol plays with the boundaries between high and low culture and turns the classical composer into a stylish 1980s pop icon.