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Warhol 'Endangered Species' sets record, selling for $725K

Andy Warhol's 'Endangered Species' artwork topped $725K to lead all lots in Heritage Auctions' $3.8M Modern & Contemporary Art Auction, Oct. 28. The auction, which featured just 21 lots, marked the debut of Heritage's Modern & Contemporary Art offerings.

DALLAS – Andy Warhol's Endangered Species, 1983, set a new world record for a numbered edition

Endangered Species

“Endangered Species”, circa 1983, Andy Warhol, ten screen prints in colors, measuring 38” x 38”, realized $175,000 during the Oct. 28 auction. (All photos courtesy Heritage Auctions)

when it sold for $725,000 in Heritage Auctions’ New York debut of Modern & Contemporary Art. The Oct. 28 auction – the first of two such sales planned this season– garnered more than $3.8+ million on just 21 lots. The firm’s second Modern & Contemporary Art offering takes place Nov. 14 in Dallas.

“New York’s Modern & Contemporary Art community gave Heritage Auctions a warm, warm welcome,” said Leon Benrimon, Heritage’s New York Director of Modern & Contemporary Art. “We put together a strong selection – unique artworks you couldn’t find anywhere else – and it’s clear collectors respected the selection and the overall character of what Heritage can bring to market.”

A stunning discovery, Robert Motherwell’s Untitled (Ochre with Black Line), 1972-73/1974, sold for $965,000 in its auction debut following more than 40 years in a private collection. Another extraordinary find, Surveillance Camera, 2010, by Ai Weiwei, the famed Chinese dissident artist, sold for $401,000. “Ai Weiwei’s works rarely come to auction and we were happy to give it the exposure it deserved,” Benrimon said.

Blonde Vivienne (Filled In), 1985/1995, by Tom Wesselmann sold for $317,000, more than double its $150,000 estimate. Warhol’s silkscreen Lola Jacobson, 1980 – an iconic society portrait – ended at $185,000.

A famed and long-considered missing early Mel Ramos painting depicting Batman at his baleful best, A Sinister Figure Lurks in the Dark, 1962, which surfaced in Northern California, realized $173,000. The painting was consigned by California resident Bill Steinfelt, who received the painting in 1962 from Ramos himself, trading a pile of comic books for it. Ramos was an undiscovered young painter at the time, then a teacher. The series from which the painting originates is considered the artist’s first mature work.

Reflections on Crash, 1990, from Roy Lichtenstein’s Reflections series, sold for $161,000 against a

A Sinister Figure

Signed, titled, and dated verso and on stretcher: 1962 "A Sinister Figure / Lurks in the Shadows" / By Mel Ramos, commanded $173,000.

$100,000 estimate; Warhol’s $ (Quadrant), 1982, a unique screen print in colors, sold for $131,000; and Untitled (X on Brown Paper), circa 1933-34, by Arshile Gorky ended at $125,000.

Additional highlights include, but are not limited to:

  • Untitled, 1994, by Sam Francis: Realized: $106,250.
  • Study for 'Wall Explosion I', 1965, but Lichtenstein: Realized: $100,000.
  • Balancier, 1973, by Alexander Calder: Realized: $100,000.

Heritage Auctions’ Nov. 14 Modern & Contemporary Art Part II Auction presents more than 300 lots, including Campbell’s Soup Box (Chicken Rice), 1986 by Warhol (est. $150,000+), one of 32 separate works by the artist in the sale.

For more information about Heritage Auctions, including the Nov. 14 Modern & Contemporary Art Auction, visit

Untited x on brown paper

Untitled (X on Brown Paper), circa 1933-34, pencil on brown paper, Arshile Gorky,19” x 25”, sold for $125,000.

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