At least seven of Warhol’s works were displayed throughout Ina Ginsburg’s Washington home, a veritable museum of the artist’s finest inspirations. But it is not just the art that took one’s breath away—it was Ginsburg herself. Warhol, her good friend, singled her out years ago, and even chose her as the Washington editor of his Interview magazine.
Ina Ginsburg’s life and legacy were forever changed by her close relationship with the Pop artist and provocateur Andy Warhol.
The friends were first introduced at a dinner she agreed to hold for the artist in 1975. “I received a call from a young friend whom I liked very much to ask if I’d give a dinner for his friend Andy Warhol, ” Ginsburg recalled. “Then I spoke to a couple of people and they were quite disapproving. They said, ‘Are you crazy? He’s so controversial, ’ but then I thought I’d be crazy to not give a dinner for him!” Several days beforehand, orchids from the artist arrived at the collector’s door—“a sign of very good manners, ” she laughed. The unexpectedly reserved Warhol and his hostess managed to speak privately during the dinner. “We just connected, ” Ginsburg said. If the pairing of one of Washington’s most popular hostesses with an enigmatic American artist came as something of a surprise—“It was all so far removed.
From The White House and Supreme Court in Washington, to Andy Warhol’s Factory in Manhattan, few individuals so effortlessly navigated the spheres of both the old and the new as the Viennese-born collector and patron of the arts, Ina Ginsburg. Elegant, quick, and always charming, she exuded an Old World refinement that secured her place as one of Washington, D.C.’s most esteemed hostesses and public figures. Behind the Continental exterior, however, was a fiercely intelligent woman in conversation with many of the greatest artists, politicians, and thinkers; from dinners with President John F. Kennedy, to Elizabeth Taylor, Liza Minnelli, Andy Warhol, Treasury Secretary G. William Miller, or the Crown Prince of Lichtenstein. In her six decades as a doyenne of Washington society, Ina Ginsburg brought an international flair and, above all, a commitment to art and ideas that left the nation’s capital forever changed.
Ina Ginsburg, who moved to Washington in 1950 and helped found the Washington National Opera and served as a trustee emeritus of the American Film Institute, nurtured the city’s cultural life. Ina Ginsburg, socialite who wrote about D.C. elite for Warhol’s magazine, died in November 2014.
Now her major art collection will be sold next November, at Christie’s. Her furniture, decorative objects, and other works of art will be presented at auction at the end of August in the Interiors sale.
One Warhol portrait of Ina Ginsburg estimate value is $200, 000-300, 000, will be among the works up for auction on November 11.
from my world, ” the collector remembered—it was their shared love of beauty, conversation, and new ideas that sparked an unwavering friendship. It was only natural that Warhol would depict Ina Ginsburg, a woman of beauty and distinction, in his celebrated ‘Society Portraits’ series.
The sale include works by Andy Warhol, (silkscreen inks and diamond dust executed in 1980 Estimate: $80, 000-120, 000); Yayoi Kusama, (estimate: $400, 000-600, 000); Sam Gilliam, and Theodoros Stamos painted circa 1960 (estimate: $40, 000-60, 000)