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Last Updated: Monday, 19 March 2007, 17:04 GMT
Warhol's Monroe set to make $15m
Lemon Marilyn by Andy Warhol
Lemon Marilyn has not been offered for sale for 45 years
An Andy Warhol portrait of Marilyn Monroe is expected to fetch more than $15m (7.7m) when it goes on sale at Christie's in New York in May.

Lemon Marilyn, which has not been on the market since the 1960s, was originally bought for just $250 (125) from Warhol's first one-man show.

Warhol created 13 portraits of the movie star using different coloured screens after her death in 1962.

The piece has remained with the same US private collector for 45 years.

Other versions of the portrait include Gold, Grape, Cherry, Mint and Orange Marilyn, that latter of which was sold last November for $16.2m (8.4m).

At the same sale, a 1972 portrait of Chairman Mao sold for $17.4m (8.8m), setting an auction record for a piece by the late pop artist.

Celebrity obsession

Another of Warhol's Mao images will go under the hammer at the auction on 16 May, with an estimated value of $2m-$2.5m (1m-1.3m).

Roy Lichtenstein's Still Life with Sculpture is among the other highlights, with a price tag of $3.5m-$4m (1.8-2.1m).

Warhol, who died in 1987, was famously obsessed with the notion of celebrity.

He is portrayed by Australian-born actor Guy Pearce in current film Factory Girl, in which Sienna Miller plays Edie Sedgwick, one of the artist's muses.


SEE ALSO
Warhol auction sets fresh record
16 Nov 06 |  Entertainment
Warhol star portrait fetches $12m
11 May 05 |  Entertainment
Warhol 'copy' row hits art world
26 Oct 03 |  Entertainment

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