Most people’s garages, attics and storage lockers tend to comprise uninteresting heaps of old clothes, books, and barely-used fitness equipment. ’70s rock icon Alice Cooper is not most people. While going through one of his own storage lockers recently, Cooper discovered a long lost silkscreen print rolled up in a tube that had been created by none other than Andy Warhol. The piece, named Little Electric Chair, had never been stretched out onto a canvas and had sat forgotten next to a collection of props from the singer’s earliest stage shows for nearly 40 years.
“Andy was kind of a groupie, and so was Alice,” the singer’s manager Shep Gordon told The Guardian. They loved famous people. So they started a relationship, and they loved to hang out.” At some point, Cooper’s then-girlfriend Cindy Lang asked for $2,500 to purchase the print, which was based on photo taken of the execution chamber at Sing Sing prison in 1953, and bared a strong resemblance to a prop electric chair Alice used in his act.
“At the time Alice is making two albums a year and touring the rest of the time,” Gordon said. “It was a rock’n’roll time, none of us thought about anything. He ends up going into an insane asylum for his drinking and then leaves New York for LA.” Years later, Gordon had a conversation with an art dealer who mentioned that the print could be worth some significant money. “Alice’s mother remembered it going into storage,” he said. “So we went and found it rolled up in a tube.”
Cooper’s find could prove to be a significant financial windfall. The last print of Little Electric Chair, a version done in green, went up for auction in 2015, where it fetched a jaw-dropping $11.6 million. Given the provenance of this piece, Cooper could be in for a significant payday if he decides to part with his copy.