Andy Warhol’s infamous Polaroid SX-70 Land camera and flash goes under the hammer at Julien’s Auctions Hard Rock Cafe Times Square NY, on 18th May. The camera was owned by Warhol and last used at the Limelight nightclub in Manhattan in 1986 shortly before the artist’s untimely death after complications during a routine operation.
Warhol gifted this camera to longtime friend, associate and collector of celebrity art, Baird Jones (1953-2006). He had met Jones in the 1970’s NYC party circuit, where Jones was a renowned nightlife promoter. Warhol wrote in his diaries of Jones, noting the lavish parties he threw for “all the rich preppies” at Studio 54 and Jones’ privileged position as the son of PEOPLE magazine founder, Cranston Jones. Warhol and Jones began working together promoting events and gallery shows during the 1980’s in the up-and-coming East Village arts scene.
Included in this lot are reproduction flyers for events collaborated on as well as reprint period photographs of Warhol and Jones. Accompanied by a letter signed by Baird Jones stating this camera was owned by Warhol and subsequently gifted to Jones.
Andy Warhol is widely recognised as one of the defining figures of 20th century art and culture, as well as a philanthropist of extraordinary generosity. As an artist, he unabashedly embraced the populist and the commercial. Born August 6, 1928 – February 22, 1987), he was an American painter, printmaker, filmmaker and photographer who was a leading figure in the visual art movement known as pop art. After a successful career as a commercial illustrator, Warhol became famous worldwide for his work as a painter, avant-garde filmmaker, record producer, author, and member of highly diverse social circles that included Bohemian street people, distinguished intellectuals, Hollywood celebrities and wealthy patrons.
Warhol is considered a pioneer in the field of photography and was one of the first to use the Polaroid SX 70 camera to produce art. He spent much of his time, in his final years using it to create original portraits and also incorporated the images snapped,into his paintings and prints.
The auction takes place at Julien’s 18 May 2013 The camera is lot 116 and carries an estimate of $3000-$6000