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Warhol’s Jack Nicklaus painting goes for seven-figures in lucrative weekend for golf auctions

April 16, 2024

Masters champion Scottie Scheffler wasn't the only one to have a lucrative weekend. Two auction houses gaveled golf-related lots with massive top bids—Golden Age with an Andy Warhol painting of Jack Nicklaus that went for $1.1 million, and The Golf Auction with one of four known tickets to the first Masters that went for $470,857.

The Warhol result crushed a previous sale of a similar painting he did of Nicklaus for his "Athletes" series that went for $400,000 in a 2020 Christie's Auction. The one in the Golden Age sale was done in much more vibrant (and Masters adjacent greens and yellows), and clearly benefitted from being in a golf-specific sale.

The 1934 Masters series badge is not only rare but also includes signatures from Bobby Jones, Horton Smith and a group of other contemporary players. The gavel price was just shy of the $600,000 another ticket from 1934 garnered in a 2022 private sale, but it was still a good weekend for Jones-related memorabilia. One of the few authentic Jones winner's trophies put up for auction—one he claimed for winning the 1916 Cherokee Country Club Invitational as a 14-year-old in 1916—went for $109,650 in the same auction. Golden Age sold two lots that went for an identical $27,864—an autographed Jones ball mounted on a trophy given to a visiting Rotary Club member in 1934 and one of the original high-speed photographic prints of Jones' swing done by Harold Edgerton in 1938.


Andy Warhol takes images of Jack Nicklaus ahead of painting the famed golfer for his "Athlete" series.


Also of note? The shirt Tiger Woods wore while playing the third round of the 2010 Masters went for $23,028—not far off the $39,000 Woods earned for finishing 60th this past weekend.