NEW YORK – One chilly New York day, Athos Pratesi and his son Federico – the head of the world-renowned Pratesi luxury linens company – were strolling down Madison Avenue toward their storefront. Athos was wearing a beloved Casentino coat with a lavish, fox fur collar. The coat had been custom-ordered from Tuscany in the signature Pratesi orange. On that day, Federico and his father were stopped by a strangely dressed man who dramatically insisted that they tell him where they bought the fabulous, brightly coloured coat.
ANDY SEATED IN THE CONFERENCE ROOM AT THE FACTORY. PHOTO BY: JACK SMITH/NY DAILY NEWS VIA GETTY IMAGES.
Startled, the pair brushed him off and continued on to the Pratesi store. Upon arriving there, Federico and Athos were surprised to find that the strange man was there as well, intending to purchase a set of the luxury sheets. Even more surprising, upon being introduced to the man, the pair learned that it was the legendary Andy Warhol.
This extraordinary meeting was the beginning of a long friendship between Athos Pratesi and the Pop star. Each man found a kindred spirit in the other’s appreciation for opulence – Warhol once informed Athos that upon completion of a successful gallery exhibition, he would treat himself to one material luxury – he purchased for himself a new set of Pratesi sheets.
ANDY WARHOL, SHOES (F. & S. II.257). ESTIMATE $80,000–120,000. TO BE OFFERED IN SOTHEBY’S PRINTS & MULTIPLES SALE IN
NEW YORK ON 20-21 APRIL.
Warhol’s 1980 screenprint with diamond dust, Shoes (F. & S. II.257), acquired by Athose and Dede Pratesi in 1982, is now a highlight of the upcoming Prints & Multiples auction in New York. The work is being sold from The Pratesi Collection with proceeds benefitting a future Pratesi Family Charitable foundation.
Lead Image: Andy Warhol, Ten One Dollar Bills, 1962.