An art buff selling an original Andy Warhol drawing on eBay for more than £1.25 million is now supporting it with a SECOND sketch from the same jumble sale.
Andy Fields, 49, is convinced the second pencil drawing, of actress Maureen O’Hara, is also a previously unknown childhood work by Warhol.
He picked up both drawings for just £3 in a garage clear-out in Las Vegas in 2010 but has never been able to get them verified as the work of the pop art legend.
The first drawing, of 1930s singer and actor Rudy Vallee, was examined by the Andy Warhol Authentication Board who had not decided on it before they were disbanded.
In their absence there is no official body to certify Warhol’s work, although Andy says experts from Bonham’s and Sothebys have privately told him they are convinced by it.
An independent US-based art valuer has also put a figure of $2.1 million USD on the work, although some believe it could be worth TEN times that.
Andy put the colourful pencil and graphite sketch on eBay in Britain but it failed to sell despite attracting over 2,000 watchers and nearly 20,000 views.
It is now being re-listed so it can be easily found on eBay’s US site – bolstered by the second sketch which he believes is also the work of Warhol from the same time, when he was aged ten or 11.
Andy is not planning to sell the second drawing – which appears to be on identical paper to the first – but hopes it will convince sceptics of that they are looking at the real thing.
It is very similar in style to many of the 300 early Warhol sketches that have only been made public by the authorities in the past year.
Father-of-four Andy said: “I’ve had experts from Sotheby’s and Bonhams who are convinced the Rudy Vallee portrait is original, without a shadow of doubt.
“But without an official authentication boards approval they are reluctant to speak publicly.
“I think it is an incredibly important work which redefines the work of one of the most famous artists of the last 100 years.
“I’ve since gained an abundance of evidence to support its authenticity and am happy to sit down with seriously interested parties to present them everything.
“I’m an open and honest man and would love for this picture to be loved by someone who really appreciates Andy Warhol’s work.”
Andy claims the people who ultimately control the Warhol market are reluctant to re-write history and acknowledge what would be Warhol’s earliest-known pop art work.
He added: “These people are so against this particular work being authentic because they simply do not wish to consider changing the facts that have formulated the current version of events Warhol fans have become used to and have no control over a man who has found a lost piece of history.”
Andy picked up the artwork at a sale of property that belonged to a man who told him his aunt had been a friend and carer of the sickly young Warhol in New York.
He said: “I am constantly told by experts that provenance is key.
“I have other authentic pictures bought on the same day from the same sale, another sketch and I can date them accurately and pinpoint the history to within two blocks from where Andy Warhol lived in the early 1940s.
“These could not have been copies of pop art before the movement had even started.”
Businessman Andy, from Tiverton, Devon has put the drawing for sale on eBay in the US with item number 350851806946 and is inviting serious enquiries only.
In October 2008 Warhol’s Eight Elvises painting was sold in a private sale for $100 million (USD) – a record for his work.