Mao, Complete Portfolio
Title: Mao Complete Portfolio
Medium: Screenprint on Beckett High White Paper.
Size: 36″ x 36″
Details: Edition of 250 signed in ball-point pen and numbered with a rubber stamp on verso. There are 50 AP singed and numbered in pencil on verso; some signed and numbered in ball-point pen. Portfolio of 10.
The Mao full suite was printed in 1972 by Styria Studio, Inc. New York. A portfolio of ten screenprints on Beckett High White Paper there are 250 prints signed in ball-point pen and numbered with a rubber stamp on verso. Also, there are 50 AP signed and numbered in pencil on verso; some signed and numbered in ball-point pen. Included in this suite are: FS II.90 to FS II.99.
After President Richard Nixon’s 1972 visit to China, and the inevitable buzz it created in the press, Andy Warhol was inspired and created the Mao full suite. Some believe that this series of prints would immortalize the image of the Chinese leader, Mao Zedong. Warhol could see a blurry mirror image of United States media in relation to Chinese propaganda. There were parallels between the cult like following in the West to movie stars and Mao Zedong in the East. Seeing these in a strange likeness, Warhol produced his Mao series in a fashion reminiscent of his portraits of American celebrities like Marilyn Monroe and Elvis Presley. These color charged screenprints of Mao were further set apart by the layers of graffiti-like scribbles that were screened on separately, transforming Chairman Mao into a worldwide pop icon.
Andy Warhol created the Mao series during the early 1970s when he was taking many commissions for celebrities. Celebrity portraits developed into a significant aspect of his career and a main source of income. Other series produced during this time are the Mick Jagger series, the Muhammad Ali portfolio and unpublished works of various celebrities such as Truman Capote.