This website is about my battle with the Warhol foundation,
their dealer Vincent Fremont and its arm the Andy Warhol Art
Authentication Board Inc.
In the course of this battle, I gained a lifetime's knowledge
of how Andy worked, thought about his art and wanted
to be remembered.
The board has unjustly (most art experts think ) declared my Warhol self portrait a fake. They have stamped it denied twice, (which runs through the picture) thereby ruining any possibility that it could be accepted as a genuine Warhol in the future.
You make up your own mind, go into the site, read the evidence which I have accumulated, weigh the testimony of Warhol's friends, colleagues and studio assistants who were there in the early days and who have a thorough knowledge of Warhol's working methods in general and this portrait in particular.
The issues raised inside are about the very nature of Andy's achievement. He's now considered one of the most important artists of the 20th century; the way he worked and thought about art in new ways is fundamental to understanding the nature of his genius.
My name is Joe Simon and I am an American film producer now living in London. The story begins in 1989 when I purchased an Andy Warhol self-portrait for the considerable sum of $195,000. Most of my friends and family bought a house, I bought a Warhol. I loved the work- I had known Andy quite well when I was a kid, so a self-portrait of the artist appealed to me. The fact that myandywarhol was signed by Andy was very important to me. The work had been authenticated by the executors of Andy Warhol as well as his estate and the foundation before I had purchased it.
When I went to sell the piece 17 years later, I was convinced by the dealer for the foundation to submit the piece to the Andy Warhol Art Authentication Board Inc, as it would be beneficial to be included in the catalogue raisonne they were editing.
The picture came back ruined, without any explanation other
than the fact that the board and the foundation which employ
them have very deep pockets and will 'drag me through
the courts until I bleed" . They told me I could resubmit the
painting after I had researched its history and provenance.
It was then that I learned that the Foundation's dealer Vincent
Fremont (the man who convinced me to submit my piece for
authentication) had also "applied" Warhol's signature onto the painting. Andy's signature was one of the reasons I had bought the piece in the first place. At the time, other unsigned paintings from this series were selling for approx 10% of what I paid; such was the premium for Warhol's signature.
After spending years of interviewing Warhol's close associates, trawling through the archives at the Warhol Museum, the New York public library, sought guidance from several of the worlds' leading conservation scientists such as Dr. Thomas Learner, and, at the request of the Authentication Board, their dealer and lawyer; spent vast sums of money which I could ill afford to research the picture, I resubmitted the work -now with an impeccable provenance - only to be told yet again that the picture was not right and, to rub salt into the wound, that no matter what I found they would never authenticate my picture.
So, here I am, not really being the confrontational type, I have sued the foundation, and will fight this giant as they attempt to spend their way to an acquittal unless they realise that I mean to take this to the end. I am now hoping to raise funds since before the lawsuit I spent much of my own money on my investigation.
This is not just my fight, it's a fight for the integrity of Andy Warhol's work.
I need your support.