Gems 187 by Andy Warhol is part of the artist’s vibrant Gems portfolio. Wahol’s print of Gems 187 depicts two uniquely cut rubies highlighted by white and black wing-like shadows. This particular print portrays two red rubies of different styles, which are contrasted by a bright yellow background. This portfolio of four showcases the individuality of each gem through Warhol’s playful variation on traditional still life. Semi-precious gems such as rubies and diamonds embody the idea of beauty and glamour that resonates with the rest of Warhol’s work.
Gems 187 by Andy Warhol as Part of His Larger Body of Work
Andy Warhol became an avid collector of jewelry after his success. He often wore elaborate pieces by Cartier or Harry Winston when he attended parties, which displayed his love for precious gemstones. The Gems prints, featuring emeralds and rubies, were a series Warhol created later in his life. The Gems series has an autobiographical dimension, in that Warhol was known to have a secret love of “feminine” things. Warhol’s appreciation of all things decadent comes across in this series and other works he did around the same time, including After The Party (1979), Shoes (1980) and Reigning Queens (1985).