Karen Bystedt x Maxim "Queen Andy II" The Lost Warhols Collection

Karen Bystedt x Maxim "Queen Andy II" The Lost Warhols Collection

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Karen Bystedt and Maxim "Queen Andy II" 2022
Collaboration with artists Karen Bystedt (Photography) and Maxim (Artwork).

Mixed Media, Etching on Watercolor Paper, Mounted on Wood with a Yellow Neon Crown. 
Dimensions 36 x 36 x 4in 
Signed by both artists and includes a certificate of authenticity.

Born in Prague, the Czech Republic, during communism, MAXIM's artistic process began early. His parents frequently visited his uncle's famous "attic-art studio" in old Prague, where he would get lost in labyrinths of large-sized canvas works while admiring their sheer size and play of color. MAXIM attended the prestigious Graphic Arts school in Prague in his formative years, where he obtained multiple degrees in graphic design, photography, lithography, calligraphy, and letterpress. He takes several classes on drawing and painting during his studies. MAXIM's undying need for expression prompted him to learn to play guitar & drums, leading him to join a well-known band Posmrtne Zkusenosti soon signed by EMI, releasing a few albums earning him recognition in his native land Czech Republic. At the age of 24, adventure calls MAXIM to America. He makes a few stops, first San Francisco, then Chicago, where he makes his mark as a reputable graphic designer earning him a collaboration with Doug Fogelson, one of Chicago's most acclaimed photographers. His next stop is Los Angeles, where he's instantly drawn to it. His desire to create art began in an atelier in DTLA where he first started focusing solely on painting.MAXIM draws his inspiration from studies of history, nature, cosmology, physics, and socioeconomic and political events (past and present). His yearning for new experiences, exploration, and inspiration brings him to work in different places worldwide.


Karen Bystedt is an internationally acclaimed, highly prolific photographer and mixed media artist currently based in Miami, Florida. She has published four photography books including Not Just Another Pretty Face (NAL, 1983), The New Breed (HOLT, 1989), Before They Were Famous (GPG, 1994) and They Dared To Dream (OSLO PROD, 1998). She has photographed film stars and rock and roll icons such as Slash, Johnny Depp, Brad Pitt, Drew Barrymore, Eddie Van Halen, and Jon Bon Jovi. Her work is exhibited in museums across the globe including The Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburg, The Astrup Fearnley Museum of Modern Art in Oslo, and The Armenian Museum of Modern Art., and her images have appeared in dozens of publications including Italian Vogue, Vanity Fair, Connoisseur Magazine, The Peninsula Magazine, Fabrik Magazine, InStyle and People. Her work has been exhibited and sold at Art Basel at Scope, Red Dot, Art Houston, LA Art Fair, Art Hamptons, and at Port Authority in NYC.

In 1983, Karen Bystedt, then a young film student, cold-called Andy Warhol at Interview Magazine and asked him to pose for her book-in-progress featuring the era’s top male models. She had come across an image of the legendary artist modeling for Barney’s and hoped to capture the icon in this unique context. Warhol asked Bystedt whom else she intended to include in this book, upon hearing her answers, he swiftly agreed to join the fold. The resulting images materialize a rare and remarkable sense of vulnerability; in this portrait session, Bystedt captures a soft and submissive Warhol, a man who spoke much of beauty, and its essential mystery, and as is suggested in his rigid pose, his bewildering gaze, and simply, his participation in her project, seemingly so wanted to be seen as beautiful himself.

Bystedt included two of the thirty-six photos shot that afternoon in her book "Not Just Another Pretty Face" published by NAL, and placed the negatives in storage, where they lived untouched for twenty-five years. In 2011, Bystedt felt compelled to revisit her representations of Andy and unearth the images captured that afternoon. She was able to locate ten of her original negatives, yet time and its offspring, reality, had taken its toll on her spellbinding photographs. She dedicated the preceding four months to restoring her Andy, pixel-by-pixel, infusing new life, breath by breath, into her images. 

Over the last ten years, this canon has developed and expanded; the work is definitively diverse, representing an eclectic array of artistic identities, thus promoting inclusion whilst positioning the artwork in the realm of the accessible with which Warhol himself toyed. The Lost Warhols live as a testament to the intrinsic value of eclecticism in visual perspective, honoring individuality in interpretation, and allowing the self to shine in position as part of a greater whole. 

Works from The Lost Warhol collection are featured in The Andy Warhol Museum, MoMA Olso, Hearst Tower, and many other museums and private collections around the world. They have been auctioned in benefits for AMFAR, Gods Love We Deliver, and recently featured at Red Dot Art Fair for Art Basel Miami 2022.

The Lost Warhols collection has been featured in countless magazines and newspapers, including Vogue, The Times, W Magazine, Architectural Digest, Interview Magazine. NY Post, WWD, LA Weekly and The Huffington Post, among many other international publications. 


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