Lot Content

Global notice COVID-19 Important notice
ANDY WARHOL (USA, 1928-1987)
This Lot has been sourced from overseas. When au… Read more PROPERTY FROM A PRIVATE COLLECTION
ANDY WARHOL (USA, 1928-1987)

Campbell's Chicken Noodle Soup Box

ANDY WARHOL (USA, 1928-1987)
Campbell's Chicken Noodle Soup Box
signed and dated 'Andy Warhol 86' (on the overlap); stamped with Andy Warhol Art Authentication Board stamp and numbered 'A104.056' (on the overlap)
synthetic polymer paint and silkscreen ink on canvas
50.8 x 50.8cm. (20 x 20in.)
Executed in 1986
Michael Kohn Gallery, Los Angeles.
Private Collection, Arizona.
Van de Weghe Fine Art, New York.
Demisch Danant, New York.
Private collection (acquired from the above in 2006).
Anon. sale, Sotheby’s New York, 13 May 2010, lot 191.
Acquired at the above sale by the present owner.
Warhol Campbell's Soup Boxes, exh. cat., Los Angeles, Michael Kohn Gallery, 1986, no. 153 (illustrated in colour, pp. 19 and 30).
Special notice

This Lot has been sourced from overseas. When auctioned, such property will remain under “bond” with the applicable import customs duties and taxes being deferred unless and until the property is brought into free circulation in the PRC. Prospective buyers are reminded that after paying for such lots in full and cleared funds, if they wish to import the lots into the PRC, they will be responsible for and will have to pay the applicable import customs duties and taxes. The rates of import customs duty and tax are based on the value of the goods and the relevant customs regulations and classifications in force at the time of import.

Condition report

If you wish to view the condition report of this lot, please sign in to your account.

Sign in
View condition report

Lot Essay

A variation of Andy Warhol’s iconic paintings of cans of tomato soup, Campbell’s Chicken Noodle Soup Box shows an everyday, readily available object as a work of high art. Depicting a rectangular box rather than the usual tin cans, the painting introduces an element of surprise, thus drawing attention to both its product type and variety name. The visible change in packaging reflects the cultural fascination with marketing and branding in the 1960s. The symbolic red and white combination as well as the use of font and lettering easily remind the consumers of the Campbell’s brand. Variations in box design, moreover, help to distinguish one product from the other: chicken noodle looks and tastes differently from tomato soup.

The development of Pop Art in the 60s coincided with a new phase of consumerism that mostly involved cheaply produced products for the masses. Immersed in this rapid transformation of class and culture, Warhol succeeded in turning these everyday objects into art. His innovative use of silkscreen blurs the lines between painting and printing. By creating seemingly uniform and mechanically produced images, Warhol’s hand produced paintings highlight the performative character of the Campbell soup images.

Warhol’s appropriation of images from consumer culture also serves as a kind of self-fashioning, given that popular culture was heavily transmitted by the media in the 60s. American clichés and stereotypes were celebrated and even fetishized both in the United States and abroad. Although his work was a celebration, it was also a critique. For by the time Warhol began to appropriate the products of the Campbell’s Soup company, they were already regarded as something of a throwback to an idealized America of the 1950s, when the postwar economic boom was at its height. By the time Warhol chose to immortalize them, and even more so by the time the present work was produced in the 1980s, the social and political climate had become more dark and complex. Pop Art’s rendering of the American dream has become one of its most enduring means of expression, and also one of its most potent cultural exports.

More from 20th Century & Contemporary Art (Evening Sale)

View All
View All