Muhammad Ali (About 1977 / 1978)
About this artwork
Warhol photographed the boxer, Muhammad Ali, in 1977 as part of his 'Athletes' series. The project was initiated by the art collector and sports enthusiast, Richard Weisman, and featured a variety of sports stars. While photographing Ali at his training camp, Warhol recalled: “there was a nine-foot-tall portrait by LeRoy Neiman on the wall next to him. I hoped mine would come out as good”. Neiman is an American artist well known for his paintings of athletes and sporting events. This poster is for a joint exhibition with Warhol at the Institute of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles. In Warhol’s screenprint of Ali, prior to printing the image he worked into the surface with paint, creating the impression of movement. Warhol captures Ali’s fixed stare mimicing the concentration required during a fight.
- title: Muhammad Ali
- accession number: AR00393
- artist: Andy WarholAmerican (1928 - 1987)
- gallery: In Storage
- object type: Work on paper
- materials: Lithograph on paper
- date created: About 1977 / 1978
- measurements: 88.60 x 53.80 cm
- credit line: ARTIST ROOMS National Galleries of Scotland and Tate. Acquired jointly through The d'Offay Donation with assistance from the National Heritage Memorial Fund and the Art Fund 2008
- copyright: © The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / DACS, London 2016.
Andy Warhol was born 'Andrew Warhola' to Slovakian immigrant parents living in Pittsburgh in America. Warhol's subject matter was taken from popular culture, in the form of advertising, comics, magazines and packaging. He was able to produce his works quickly by transferring images onto canvas or paper through photography and screenprinting, sometimes with the help of assistants. Warhol stated that he wanted to make works that showed no trace of having been produced by hand. His interest in mass production reflected the fast-developing consumer culture he recognised in America. His New York studio, 'The Factory,' became a popular meeting place for artists, drop-outs, celebrities and bands.