Alice Cooper Finds Vintage Warhol 'Rolled Up in a Tube'

Danny Woods
July 25, 2017

Forty or so years ago, rock legend Alice Cooper and art legend Andy Warhol were both in New York City and spending a lot of time in the same place, including the legendary music club, Max's Kansas City.

The piece, named Little Electric Chair, had never been stretched out onto a canvas and had sat forgotten next to a collection of props from the singer's earliest stage shows for almost 40 years.

Shep Gordon, Cooper's manager and producer, is to thank for the discovery.

"We spoke to Alice's mother who said she thought it was probably still in storage", Gordon continues. "So we went and found it rolled up in a tube". Cooper's concerts included a stage show that involved Alice sitting in an electric chair acting as if he was being electrocuted while performing, which is said to have inspired Warhol's painting.

Gordon said Cooper thought he remembered talking to Warhol about the art.

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It was during that time that Alice was touring non-stop and recording two albums a year.

Following his release, he left NY and headed for Los Angeles. Following a conversation with a friend, the rock icon searched his house and uncovered an Andy Warhol print he'd been gifted in the 70s. "He thinks the conversation was real, but he couldn't put his hand on a Bible and say that it was", Gordon told the Guardian.

Although another Little Electric Chair work by the artist sold in 2015 for $11.6 million, Alice's is unlikely to sell for that sum because it is unsigned and experts at the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts stopped authenticating works in 2011. Twenty-five hundred was the going rate at the time.

Cooper first met Andy Warhol in NY in the 1960s and by 1970 the pair would hang out together at the notorious Max's Kansas City nightclub. "It was all a swirl of drugs and drinking", he said of the decade that Cooper and Warhol met. But you should have seen Alice's face when [Warhol expert] Richard Polsky's estimate came in. "His jaw dropped and he looked at me", Gordon added.

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