Reigning Queens (1985)
About this artwork
In 1985 Warhol embarked on his largest portfolio of screenprints. Entitled ‘Reigning Queens’ it contains sixteen prints of the four ruling queens at that time in the world: Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom, Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands, Queen Ntombi Twala of Swaziland and Queen Margrethe II of Denmark – the last of whom features in this poster. Based on official or media photographs, Warhol has incorporated abstract blocks of colour that, although screenprinted, appear collaged. He has also combined printed elements derived from drawings, which emphasise details such as jewellery. A Royal edition of the portfolio was published that incorporated diamond dust. The by-product of the manufacture of industrial-grade diamonds, this dust gave the prints a sparkly, extravagant effect.
- title: Reigning Queens
- accession number: AR00396
- artist: Andy WarholAmerican (1928 - 1987)
- gallery: In Storage
- object type: Work on paper
- materials: Lithograph on paper
- date created: 1985
- measurements: 82.10 x 60.00 cm (framed: 88.90 x 66.80 x 3.80 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.