The artist making 'new' Warhol paintings, 30 years after his death

Paul Stephenson working on After Warhol paintingImage copyright Adrian Levy Image caption Paul Stephenson working on his recreation of Warhol's Chairman Mao portrait

Is it possible to create new paintings by Andy Warhol, 30 years after his death?Warhol got other people to do most of the work first time around - and now a British artist has recreated some of his most famous works using exactly the same methods and materials.

There was a reason Andy Warhol called his legendary 1960s New York studio The Factory.

It housed something resembling an assembly line of assistants working on his famous screenprint paintings of icons like Elvis Presley, Marilyn Monroe and Jackie Kennedy.

On occasion, his assistant and his mother even signed the paintings on his behalf.

"I think somebody should be able to do all my paintings for me," Warhol told interviewer Gene Swenson[1] in 1963.

"I think it would be so great if more people took up silk screens so that no-one would know whether my picture was mine or somebody else's."

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Warhol wanted to remove any trace of the artist's hand in his art

More than 50 years on, Paul Stephenson has done that - and ignited a debate about what can be done after an artist's death.

Stephenson has made new versions of Warhol works by posthumously tracking down the pop artist's original acetates, paints and printer, and recreating the entire process as precisely as possible.

Stephenson's project began when he bought 10 original Warhol acetates - the enlarged photographic negatives of those icons that Warhol used to create his screenprints.

While Warhol's assistants did many parts of the physical work, the artist, who died in 1987, was the only one who worked directly on these acetates, touching up parts of the portraits to prepare them for printing.

Stephenson took the acetates to one of Warhol's original screenprinters in New York, Alexander Heinrici, who offered to help use them to make new paintings.

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption The real deal - this 1973 Warhol of Mao sold for $11m in April

Those paintings - of Chairman Mao, Jackie Kennedy, an electric chair and a self-portrait of Warhol himself - are going on show at the Buy Art Fair in Manchester at the end of October.He's titled the series After Warhol.

"I'm not saying they're Warhols," Stephenson says."It's a forced collaboration because the original author doesn't know anything about it."

He may not claim the new paintings should be considered posthumous Warhols, but Rainer Crone, one of the leading Warhol authorities and the first to catalogue the artist's work, said they could be.

Crone died in 2016 but he saw Stephenson's recreations and sent him an email saying "paintings made with these film positives under described circumstances and executed posthumously by professionals (scholars as well as printers) are authentic Andy Warhol paintings".

Stephenson's paintings are not identical to Warhol's originals, but are near enough.

Image copyright Paul Stephenson Image caption Stephenson has recreated portraits of Jackie Kennedy, Mao and Warhol himself

Stephenson says he's simply asking a question:"If the world-leading Warhol scholar says it's a Warhol, and you do everything in the mechanical process that the original artist did, and the original artist said 'I want other people to make my paintings', which he did - what is it?

"I don't know the answer to that question."

There are other examples of works being made in an artist's name after their death.

The estates of Degas and Rodin have made bronze sculptures using their original designs.They are sold as posthumous works, with lower prices to match.

Extending Warhol's career

The fact the price tags for Paul Stephenson's recreations are missing a few zeroes - they will be on sale for £4,000 and £10,000 - is proof that he's not expecting anyone to regard them as authentic Warhols.

Warhol expert Richard Polsky, who offers a service authenticating Warhol works, says Stephenson's paintings shouldn't be regarded as posthumous Warhols.

"I like the fact that he's honest - he's not claiming Andy made these, he's claiming he made them," Polsky says."I also notice he's priced them very modestly.All that's good.

"It sounds like he's trying to extend Warhol's career, so to speak, even though he's dead.There's a charm to that, but it just seems so shallow."

'Problematic'

There's a key difference between someone else making a Warhol painting in his Factory during his lifetime and someone else making one now, according to Jessica Beck, curator at the Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh.

"He was always involved in that final product in some way," she says, explaining that the artist oversaw everything at the Factory and did get involved in other ways after the inception.

"This idea of taking his screens and recreating new Warhols without being in dialogue with him - obviously, because he's now dead - that's problematic."

But Stephenson's works may still appeal to people who want to impress their friends by appearing to have a Warhol on their wall, but without spending millions.

Buy Art Fair runs from 27-29 October.A HBO/Vice documentary titled Business of Making Art, featuring Paul Stephenson, will be screened at the fair on 28 October.


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References

  1. ^ Warhol told interviewer Gene Swenson (www.berk-edu.com)
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The winemaker who battles temperatures as low as -25C

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Media captionHow the wines of Canadian winemaker Norman Hardie are winning fans around the world.

With winter temperatures regularly dipping below -25C at his vineyard, winemaker Norman Hardie definitely didn't chose an easy place to grow his grapes.

"Minus 25 is the absolute death knell for vitis vinifera [the common grape vine], we actually have to bury our vines in the winter [to protect them].It's a huge job," says the 51-year-old.

"And then we can get snap spring frosts that can quickly ruin a crop.We lost more than 80% in 2015."

While most of us associate winemaking with warm countries, Mr Hardie has since 2004 been making wine in… Canada.

Image copyright Johnny C Y Lam Image caption Norman Hardie Winery is currently continuing with its 2017 harvest

Based in picturesque Prince Edward County, Ontario, a two-hour drive east of Toronto alongside Lake Ontario, the summers are more often glorious.

The winters, on the other hand, are harsh, which means that the team at Norman Hardie Winery face a race against the cold weather every November.

"I have 80,000 plants today, so that is almost a quarter of a million canes [the vine's branches] that we have to tie down by hand, and then covered with a mound of earth," says Norman.

"Before then carefully opening up and untying in the spring."

If that wasn't labour intensive enough, come April and May Norman and his team have to light fires and position wind turbines to try to drive away late frosts.But sometimes, such as in 2015, they just aren't that successful.

Image copyright Johnny C Y Lam Image caption Norman Hardie says that Canada's cool weather helps him to make excellent wine

Up against such challenges, you might question why Norman ever chose to plant vineyards and build a winery in Ontario.He says that despite the challenges, the combination of cool weather and the clay and limestone soil of Prince Edward County allow him to make world class wines.

"The great wines are always made on the edge, and we're certainly on the edge," says South African-born Norman, who prior to going into winemaking had been a sommelier (wine waiter) in Toronto.

"I'd rather be here than anywhere else in the world because the flavours we get out of these soils are unique."

Image copyright Norman Hardie Winery Image caption While many wine regions around the world have cold winters, they aren't as cold as Canada's

Primarily making white wines from chardonnay and a red wines from pinot noir, Norman Hardie's wines now have a cult following in Canada, and are even said to be the favourite tipples of Canadian Prime Minster Justin Trudeau.

But from day one, Norman - who studied winemaking in Burgundy, Oregon, California, South Africa, and New Zealand prior to establishing his own winery - wanted his wines to be sold internationally.

This brought his next big challenge - how to persuade a sceptical world to take Canadian wine seriously, when even Norman admits that 30 years ago the country made "terrible wine".

Image caption Canadian wine production remains a drop in the global ocean

Norman's solution was to turn himself into a travelling salesman, and build up his wine's global reputation "one top sommelier one top buyer, and one top wine journalist, at a time… flying around the world, pounding the pavement, speaking to people, changing people's ideas about Canada".

So attending wine fairs, visiting wine importers, and knocking on the doors of Michelin-star restaurants, he started to slowly build up export orders.

This is the first feature of a new 20-week series called Connected Commerce, which highlights companies around the world that are successfully exporting, and trading beyond their home market.

Focusing particularly on the UK and New York, Norman says his personal, face-to-face approach enabled him to let some of the most influential people in the global wine world "understand what we're doing, why we're doing it, and how we are doing it".

He adds:"You can only do that with face time, and once you have them they are your evangelists."

From selling 6,000 bottles in 2004, Norman Hardy Winery produced 240,000 in 2016.From that 6,804 bottles were exported across eight countries - China, Denmark, Japan, New Zealand, Sweden, Taiwan, the UK, and the US.

And he still is regularly overseas promoting his wines, including spending five to six days every year in the UK.

Back at the winery, there are now six year-round employees, rising to 50 in the busy summer months and at harvest time in late September and October.The business now has annual revenues of 4.1m Canadian dollars ($3.3m;£2.5m).

Image copyright Pool/Getty Images Image caption The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall stopped by Norman Hardie Winery during a recent Canadian royal tour

John Downes, a London-based wine expert, who has the top "master of wine" qualification, says that Norman was right to recognise the fact that as Canada is such a little known wine region he had to do a lot of marketing work to "stand out" on the global stage.

Image caption Prince Edward County is now home to 40 wineries

Mr Downes adds:"A lot of people in wine don't tell stories, they say 'here's my wine what do you think about it?'.

"But they don't tell the story behind the wine, and that gives the picture of the wine to the consumer.Norman does that very well."

Image copyright AFP PHOTO/Prime Ministers Office Image caption Barack Obama and Justin Trudeau sipped Norman Hardie wine over dinner in a Montreal restaurant back in June

While exporting wine is not without its challenges, such as the need to produce different labels for each country, Norman says that building up a vibrant export business has also boosted his sales in Canada.

Now preparing to bury the vines for another winter, Norman says:"That credibility, that international credibility, says you're doing something right."...

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'Go to the dentist and get fined £100'

Charlotte Waite Image caption Charlotte Waite says it is distressing when so many wrong fines are being issued

Going to the dentist is something that many would want to avoid - but how about if you also faced a penalty fine?

More than 40,000 people a year in England are getting fines of £100 - from an automated system that dentists say is hitting the most vulnerable.

They warn that people such as dementia sufferers are unfairly getting caught up in a system meant to stop fraudsters from getting free treatment.

The NHS accepts there is a problem with errors and is promising changes.

The fines, about £4m per year, are being applied by a random screening process that checks on whether people going to the dentist are really eligible for free treatment.

But dentists say rising numbers of people with dementia, or those with learning difficulties, are being unfairly fined for something as simple as ticking a wrong box in confusing paperwork.

When these have been challenged, about 90% have been overturned as having been incorrectly applied.

The British Dental Association says the problem seems to be increasing and with an ageing population is only likely to get worse.


Why dentists are complaining

Charlotte Waite, a senior dentist working in Loughborough, Leicestershire, says this is a problem appearing on a "daily basis".

"This has become a significant barrier to care.It can cause a lot of distress if people feel they are seen as fraudulent," she says.

Mrs Waite, vice-chair of the British Dental Association's England Community Dental Services Committee, is leading a campaign to stop a wave of fines for elderly and frail people, those with dementia or learning difficulties, who have made honest mistakes when filling in forms about free care.

Image caption Charlotte Waite says the fining errors need to be "sorted out" as soon as possible

She says even when patients are eligible for free treatment, an incorrect description of specific benefits or failure to renew documents can trigger a penalty fine, which rises to £150 if there is a delay in payment.

And she says because it typically affects vulnerable and often low-income families, there has been a lack of a "powerful advocate" to raise the issue.

Many such patients will be brought to the dentist by a carer, and Mrs Waite says they might not have the detailed information about types of benefit and exemption certificates.

She says this becomes a dilemma for dentists, whether to turn away patients or to treat them and then risk that they will face a fine.

Patients might turn up for the dentist and go away again without treatment because of confusion over benefits and entitlements and worries about being fined.

"I feel very strongly that clinical time should be spent on clinical work," she says, rather then trying to navigate the benefits system.

"It's an extreme waste of clinical time.

"We really need to sort this out now."


What dentists say they've seen

  • "This patient has severe learning disabilities and cannot communicate verbally.

"They were fined twice over an 18-month period, due to the change in exemption and Mum accidently putting the wrong thing on the form.

"Mum was having a bad year and the patient had suffered a few health problems, and these fines were very upsetting and caused lots of anxiety.

Image caption The NHS says it is going to launch an awareness-raising campaign and make information simpler

"We did manage to get the fines turned around, but this took long periods of time and many phone calls and a letter.We were constantly up against a brick wall."

  • "A vulnerable adult who has a valid certificate - which he brought in for us to see and the number was recorded correctly - was sent a fine for £100 saying he was claiming free treatment incorrectly.

"He contacted me in quite a panic and I had to reassure him and request that he brought in the paperwork to me to see, I completed the appeal form for him as he was entitled to claim free dental care.

"The appeal form that needed sending back was quite a complex letter, and I think our patient would have struggled to respond to it without help.

"I felt it was most unfair for him to have to go through that."

  • "I had a patient whose parents didn't realise her exemption certificate had expired, only to be fined.

"I phoned on her behalf, but they would not accept my word regarding the patient's special needs and wanted a letter from the patient's doctor.

"It took three weeks for the patient to get in to see the doctor as it wasn't urgent.All I could get was a deferral in increasing the fine [for non-payment] while the patient waited for a letter from her doctor."


What the NHS wants to do in response

The NHS Business Services Authority, which oversees the fining system, accepts there is a problem and is looking for a way to make improvements.

A spokeswoman says no-one wants vulnerable people to be unfairly fined or for dentists to waste valuable clinical time.

Image caption The NHS says it is going to launch an awareness-raising campaign and make information simpler

The checks have an important role in making sure free treatment isn't being unfairly accessed by those who should pay.

The screening system compares what people have put on forms at the dentist against two databases of information about benefits and entitlements - and if these do not match, the fining system generates a penalty notice.

The most recent figures suggest almost 120,000 fines have been issued over the past three years.

But the British Dental Authority says when 30,000 of these fines were checked, almost 90% were overturned, suggesting the scale of the error in the system.

  • The NHS says it will run a national awareness-raising campaign, so people will have a much better understanding of who is entitled to free dental treatment
  • There are plans for simpler forms and clearer information, particularly for vulnerable patients

"We want to make sure that patients, particularly those who struggle with literacy, understand if they are entitled to receive free dental treatment or if they should pay," says a NHS Business Services Authority spokeswoman.

"We recognise the importance of information and access to it for everyone."...

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'Depression overwhelmed me, but it also gave me a career'

Image copyright Roger Bool - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Image caption Catherine struggled with depression in the second year of her degree in drama and English literature

At her lowest, Catherine wondered whether she would be able to finish her degree.

"I lost all concept of the future.I felt I was losing control of my mind.

'It was my second year at Manchester University, and early on I began feeling very tired.

"Blood tests showed I was anaemic.

"Towards Christmas, I began feeling very anxious and getting quite stressed over my academic work because I couldn't concentrate in the way I was used to being able to.

"I just thought I had low iron and was a bit stressed.I had never thought about mental illness before.

"At home over Christmas, I had more blood tests, which showed I was physically healthy, but I just felt worse.It was more than just low iron.

"I wasn't just feeling tired.It was feelings of worthlessness.I felt there was no point in anything.I just didn't have any hope at all.

"There were points when I was crying or experiencing a numb feeling, just not feeling anything, which was quite scary because I am quite an emotional person."

By February 2016, she was 'just about functioning'.

"The thought of doing anything was overwhelming.

"Even showering, brushing my teeth or cooking felt like a mammoth task.

"Some days getting out of bed was really difficult.Some days I stayed in my room all day.I definitely missed some lectures.

"My attendance dropped, but I didn't completely disappear.I never got chucked off the course.I was still just about functioning.

"But I was panicking and crying, everything was too much.I just didn't know what to do.

"I spoke to a friend about that feeling of hopelessness and just wanting to run away from it all.

"I had never had that feeling before.It was quite scary.

"She pushed me to get treatment."

She was prescribed antidepressants.

"I started a journey that was quite difficult.

"Drugs work differently on different people and the first drug made me worse, mainly mentally.

"I felt I was going downhill.

"It was around that point that I wasn't sure if I could finish my degree."

"Mornings were particularly difficult.I felt I couldn't move.

"The drug was exacerbating what was already there.

"My GP moved me to a different antidepressant, which slowly started to work.

"I was also accessing the university counselling service, which was very helpful.

"And once my academic tutor was aware I was ill, I could go and see her

"I had more relaxed deadlines and access to a study coach, which got set up towards the end of my second year.

"It was a process of getting things in place to make things more manageable."

She also started cognitive behavioural therapy.

"There is a timeliness for different remedies.

"It was the first therapeutic support that was really driving to get you to think about your thoughts and challenge your thoughts.Not all your thoughts are facts."

"If I think about my mind at the time when depression was invading, it was about feeling worthless, and you can challenge those beliefs.

"I think that it's difficult to pin down exactly why or how, but the medication settled and I began to get better.

"I got through the year and gradually became more myself over the summer.

"The third year was all about rebuilding myself.

"When I wasn't feeling good, the future was quite a difficult thing to visualise.

"So the process of applying for a graduate programme was part of starting to believe in myself again and to feel more confident."

In July 2017, she graduated with a first-class degree - and started the training programme a few days later.

"I knew mental health social work was challenging, stimulating and varied and I really wanted to do it.

"I think that contributed to my motivation to work hard in my third year at finding what would help me stay well myself.

"I just knew I needed to develop the resilience and coping strategies that would help me stay well and do the programme and become a mental-health social worker.

"It's been really good.It's very intense, as I expected, and I am learning a lot very quickly.It's a lot to take in.

"There's so much variety in what we are doing.I really enjoy it.

"It's really pushing me and challenging me, but there's a lot of support which has really helped me make the most of it and cope with the challenge and pressure of it.

"I always say that I can't regret what happened.

"It totally changed my plan, and I wouldn't be doing what I'm doing now without that experience.

"I knew I wanted to work with people and had thought about social work generally.

"The experience I had gave me a tiny glimpse into what it means to be mentally distressed.

"It unlocked a level of empathy that I didn't have access to before.

"For me, the thought that I could play a part in someone else's journey is really important to me.It's very rewarding.

"It's connecting and wanting to be part of enabling someone to help themselves and feel well again.

"I am just starting to get my own caseload.Until now, it's been a process of shadowing.

"With close support, I am starting to do some real work.It's exciting."

Catherine is on the Think Ahead fast-track training programme and will qualify as a mental-health social worker next year, with a master's degree in social work after two years.

Produced by Judith Burns, BBC family and education reporter....

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