Torso (Double), circa 1982; Screenprint in colors on Saunders Waterford (Hot Pressed) paper; Andy Warhol Art Authentication Board Inc. stamp, The Estate of Andy Warhol stamp, and inscribed with unique authentication number in pencil on the reverse; Printer: Rupert Jasen Smith, NY; Size - Sheet 30 1/2" x 43"; Catalog Raisonne: Feldman/Schellmann: IIIA.35 [c]; Unframed.
"We live in an age when the traditional great subjects - the human form, the landscape, even newer traditions such as abstract expressionism - are daily devalued by commercial art." - Andy Warhol
In the late 1970's, Andy Warhol began to work on two complementary series of works, Sex Parts and Torsos. Both series were derived from erotic photographs taken by the artist with his 35mm and Polaroid Big Shot cameras. When Warhol was once asked about the nude photographs scattered around his studio, he said to associate Bob Colacello "Just tell them it's art, Bob. They're landscapes." The Torso series developed after Warhol discovered a box of explicit nudes he taken earlier of the porn star Ken Harrison. The less risque photographs were converted into silkscreens, and were used to create prints for the Torso series. They were first shown at the Grand Palais, Paris in October, 1977.
The Torso series would be a subject that Warhol would return to throughout his artistic life, and it is has been compared to the classical nudes and human body representations that have been depicted throughout the annals of art history. Warhol created this imagery using a variety of different media including photography, painting, film, and print making.
Torso (Double) is a wonderful example of Warhol's use of the human form as subject matter. This work exists only in unique print format, with no canvas paintings ever having been created. The focus is a bent male nude, with his arms in front of him, and cropped so he can only be viewed between his neck and upper thigh. The resulting composition has been doubled, with one image superimposed next to the other, and the entire field covered with bold and graphic colors. Both images are joined together not only by overlapping forms but by sharing the colors of a light pale blue and a saturated orange. The right image also has a pale green and pale purple, while the left has a dominating eye catching red. The colors, in combination with the poses, are both imposing and suggestive without being pornographic. This allows for the eyes of the viewer to skip and move about the field, all the while finding new pathways and relationships within the double lined figurative forms. Torso (Double) is an absolutely fantastic human figurative work by the great Pop artist Andy Warhol and would be a great addition to any art collection!