Pennsylvania auction house to sell disputed Andy Warhol print

Aug. 18, 2013 at 3:03 PM

MILLVILLE, Pa., Aug. 18 (UPI) -- A silkscreen print said to be by Andy Warhol is set for a Pennsylvania auction block, but experts said they are uncertain that the pop artist created the piece.

The manager of Col. Kirk's Auction Gallery in Millville estimated that the piece, which depicts German fashion model Christa Paffgen in a stylized American flag, will bring in a few thousand dollars.

But others said they are not sure the piece was created by the pop artist, the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reported.

"There are early drawings, but none of them look like that or have that subject matter at all," Tom Sokolowski, the former director of the Andy Warhol Museum, said. "The flag is so crudely done. Warhol never made an image like that."

The auction house alleges that the piece is on paper that was exclusively made for Warhol, but Sam Berkovitz, another auctioneer, said there was no such paper.

The auction house also said that authentication of Warhol's works has come impossible.

The Andy Warhol Art Authentication Board disbanded in October 2011, after spending $7 million to defend themselves in a lawsuit over the authentication of a 1964 Warhol portrait.

"I doubt that any other examples of this print have been offered or seen before," Berkovitz said. "Without ironclad provenance, it would be all but impossible to prove this print is authentic."

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