A star piece from Andy Warhol’s formidable watch collection is heading to auction.
The luxury replica Patek Philippe Ref. 2526, which will go under the gavel at Sotheby’s Fine Watches sale today at 12 pm ET, represents a feat of watchmaking in and of itself but also happens to have ties to the legendary pop artist. It’s a little more subdued than you might expect, too.
Introduced in 1953, the 2526 was equipped with perfect fake Patek Philippe’s first automatic movement: the self-winding caliber 12-600 AT. (The 12-ligne movement is roughly 6 mm in diameter and automatic, hence the moniker.) This technical innovation was paired with a slim, simple case and a classic eggshell-hued enamel dial. Patek Philippe copy online chose this hardwearing material as it’s not susceptible to oxidation or moisture damage. As a result, enamel dials seldom tarnish or deteriorate.
The best 1:1 replica Patek Philippe 2526 quickly became a favorite among collectors and was subsequently reimagined with different metals and dials. Enamel dials remain quite a rarity, however, as they are delicate, costly and difficult to produce.
Produced circa 1955, Warhol’s example sports a 36 mm case made of 18-karat pink gold and a coveted “first series” dial that has been double stamped. The artist reportedly bought the watch from Serpico Y Laino in Venezuela. The venerated retailer added its stamp at 6 o’clock, right under Swiss made replica Patek Philippe’s insignia. The watch is in good nick, too. Sotheby’s says the case is in overall good condition and the enamel dial is intact. The numbers show light wear and a little oxidation, but they are otherwise fine.
It’s not the first time this copy piece has been offered at auction. After Warhol’s death in 1987, a huge collection of gemstones, designer jewelry and high quality fake watches was discovered in the late artist’s East 66th Street townhouse. Sotheby’s offered the haul the next year in the Andy Warhol Collection, Part II auction. (Part I was a 10-day extravaganza dedicated to Warhol’s paintings.) In something of a full circle moment, the Patek Philippe super clone for sale has been listed for the second time at Sotheby’s by the collector who purchased it in the ‘88 auction. The piece is expected to fetch between $40,000 and $80,000.