Embracing Couple with Marbleised Background
© The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / DACS, London 2009

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Embracing Couple with Marbleised Background 1952
  • Artist Rooms
In the early 1950s Warhol experimented with marbling paper. A friend commented that Warhol’s “bathtub was usually full of paper he was marbling, leading friends to believe he never used it himself”. This work is an example of Warhol combining a blotted-line drawing with a marbleised background. The swirling pattern resembles a bed-sheet, creating a veil around the embracing couple. Their eyes are closed which adds to the dreamlike quality of the image. In 1954 Warhol featured in both group and solo shows at the Loft Gallery in New York. Among the works he exhibited were many of his marbleised drawings and other folded and crumpled paper pieces displayed on the walls, ceiling and floor.

Glossary Open

Blotted-Line Technique

Andy Warhol first experimented with this form of print-making whilst a student and it would later characterise his commercial work of the 1950s. With two sheets of paper hinged together, a pencil drawing is made on one sheet which is subsequently traced over with ink. Whilst the ink is still wet the sheets of paper are pressed together, thus transferring the line. The result is a broken, yet apparently intuitive, line drawing.

Blotted-Line Technique


  • Acc. No. AR00241
  • Medium Ink and watercolour on paper
  • Size 30.00 x 35.60 cm
  • Credit ARTIST ROOMS National Galleries of Scotland and Tate. Acquired jointly through The d'Offay Donation with assistance from the National Heritage Memorial Fund and the Art Fund 2008