There’s some kind of mystique that surrounds anything Andy Warhol ever touched. Aside from spearheading the pop art movement in the ‘50s and coming to emblemize an entire section of Hollywood culture over the next three decades, the man himself was a bit of a mystery.
The idea of enigma can also very much be applied to certain timepieces. As one of the most coveted time-only models of all time, the Patek Philippe 2526 is an icon in its own right. Launched in 1953, it was the Swiss brand’s first automatic watch, tapping the iconic Caliber 12-600AT movement, and is a visual piece of beauty with its enamel dial and influential case design. Sold at auction today from Sotheby’s was an exceptional example of the 2526 that was once owned by Andy Warhol himself.
While not technically as rare as the insanely grail-worthy white gold or platinum variants of the 2526, the pink gold case of Warhol’s watch is arguably more striking — provenance aside — especially when paired with the eggshell white dial. Double-signed by its retailer, the timepiece was purchased by the artist in the ‘50s from Patek’s official Venezuelan dealer Serpico Y Laino. But after he died in 1987, his estate sold this watch the following year.
For the first time since ‘88, Andy Warhol’s personal Patek Philippe 2526 in pink gold was sold today. Despite the $40,000 to $80,000 estimate, the watch auctioned for $101,600 from Sotheby’s.