Echoes of America in Andy Warhol’s “White Disaster”

New York | 16 November

There are exceptionally few works of art that invoke great reverential awe, that impart by their very presence a sublime contemplation of the universal human experience; these are the artworks which come to define their present, and which not only speak to the fundamental concerns of humanity—but memorialize them for eternity. Andy Warhol’s White Disaster (White Car Crash 19 Times) from 1963 is irrefutably one of these true masterpieces.

Soaring above the viewer, Warhol’s towering canvas draws the viewer inward with an irresistible magnetism, while the white canvas emits a faintly miraculous glow, as if illuminated from within or perhaps above. Against the pure white, the dark rows of images, stacked and repeated with unerring purpose, draw our gaze ever upward in an experience of ascension: it is there that we are compelled to consider an image that is at once familiar and strange, personal and universal, beautiful yet terrible.

Andy Warhol’s White Disaster will be offered as a highlight in the Contemporary Evening Auction on 16 November at Sotheby’s New York.

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