Andy Warhol Chronology
by Gary Comenas
1975 - 1979
Andy Warhol buys a Rolls Royce. Lou Reed writes a musical. Eric Emerson dies. Jackie Curtis graduates. Andy Warhol films Bad. Andy Warhol does Exposures. Holly Woodlawn and Divine. Billy Name goes home. Holly Woodlawn does television. Studio 54 is busted. Andy Warhol paints Torsos and Sex Parts. Bob Dallesandro dies. Andy Warhol does Oxidations. Fred Hughes gets MS. Andy Warhol takes drugs. Xenon opens. Cocaine Cowboys is filmed in Montauk. Jackie Curtis gets married. Conversations with Truman Capote. Angus Maclise dies.
ca. JANUARY 1975: HALSTON HAS A PARTY FOR VICTOR.
HALSTON had a private party for boyfriend VICTOR HUGO which was covered in the Small Talk section of the February 1975 issue of Interview magazine. Guests included Donna Jordan (L'Amour), Pat Ast (Heat), Sylvia Miles (Heat) and a male Jackie Curtis.
FEBRUARY 2, 1975: LEE RADZIWILL ASKS WARHOL "DID YOU GO TO CHURCH TODAY?"
The fact that Warhol attended church regularly was relatively unknown at the time. During an interview with Lee Radziwill, conducted by Warhol and Fred Hughes for the March 1975 issue of Interview magazine, Warhol admitted going to church regularly and taking communion "sometimes."
See: Andy Warhol Goes to Church
1975: ANDY WARHOL BUYS A ROLLS ROYCE.
Andy Warhol bought a new car, "moving up" from a Mercedes to a new black, white and brown Rolls-Royce Silver Shadow, instructing his boyfriend Jed Johnson to tell people that he had traded it for art. He later purchased another Rolls Royce in the summer of 1976 - an old and rare station wagon, to use at his place in Montauk - although because of its condition, "it never left the Southampton mechanic's garage". (BC242)
1975: LOU REED WRITES A MUSICAL.
Andy Warhol approached LOU REED to write songs for a musical based on Warhol's recently published book 'The Philosophy of Andy Warhol'. Reed wrote the musical adaptation overnight.
Andy Warhol: "I was so surprised. He just came over the next day and had it all done."
Lou Reed: "I played the songs for Andy. He was fascinated but horrified. I think they kind of scared him." (LR271)
ca. 1975: LANCE LOUD JOINS INTERVIEW.
LANCE LOUD became a contributing editor of Interview magazine, starting a monthly music column called Loudspeaker. (BC256)
MAY 28, 1975: ERIC EMERSON DIES.
ERIC EMERSON's body was found near the West Side Highway early one morning. According to some accounts of the era, his body had been placed there after he overdosed on heroin.
1975: JACKIE CURTIS GRADUATES FROM HUNTER COLLEGE.
MID-1975: ANDY WARHOL HIRES TWO MAIDS.
ANDY WARHOL hired a live-in Filipino housekeeper, Nena, who was soon joined by her sister Aurora. (BC282)
AUGUST 1975: ANDRE LEON TALLEY JOINS INTERVIEW.
AUGUST 1975: ANDY WARHOL'S BAD IS FINANCED.
FRED HUGHES asked Interview magazine financial backer, PETER BRANT to help finance ANDY WARHOL'S BAD. Peter agreed, as long as he could get out of financing Interview. "Motion Olympus Inc" was replaced by "Interview Enterprises Inc." on the masthead of the magazine. (BC262)
SEPT. 1975: ANDY WARHOL GOES CROSS-COUNTRY.
Andy Warhol did a major cross-country tour to promote The Philosophy of Andy Warhol: From A to B and Back Again.
ca. SEPT./OCT. 1975: DRAG QUEENS IN ITALY.
Andy Warhol's Ladies and Gentlemen paintings aka the Drag Queen paintings are exhibited by Ferrara at the Palazzo di Diamente in Italy. The paintings were never exhibited in the United States during Warhol's life although prints from the series were. (BC228)
OCT. 1975: ANDY WARHOL GOES TO ENGLAND.
England was the last stop of the promotional tour for The Philosophy of Andy Warhol. Lord and Lady Lambton, parents of Ann Lambton who was part of the promotional entourage, gave a party for Warhol on the last night in London. Guests included the MARQUESS and MARCHIONESS of DUFFERIN, LORD and LADY LICHFIELD, LADY DIANA COOPER, CHARLIE TENNANT, PRINCESS ELIZABETH of YUGOSLAVIA, GUNTHER SACHS, LUCIEN FREUD, KEITH MOON, MARTIN AMIS, CAROLINE KENNEDY, J.PAUL GETTY III, "and a woman in rubber named Jordan, who worked in a King's Road boutique named Sex." (BC318)
END 1975: MARC BALET JOINS INTERVIEW.
Balet was a graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design and Fran Lebowitz' "best friend." He was hired to be the art director of Interview. He came to NY after winning the Prix du Rome for 2 years in Architecture. (BC249/MB)
END 1975: ANDY WARHOL HAS A PARTY.
Andy Warhol had a rare evening dinner party at the Factory for SAO SCHLUMBERGER. Fifty guests attend including JACK NICHOLSON, ANJELICA HUSTON, FAYE DUNAWAY, CARROLL BAKER, DIANA VREELAND, JERRY ZIPKIN, the entire HALSTON group, and LARRY RIVERS.
At the party, Warhol "hardly noticed" the presence of "a woman who could often be found exchanging hundred-dollar bills for small packets of aluminum foil." (BC288)
FEB. 1976: ANDY WARHOL DOES EXPOSURES.
ANDY WARHOL bought a camera - the Minox 35EL. At the time it was the smallest camera on the market, allowing him to easily carry it around with him. The book, Andy Warhol's Exposures was conceived. (BC330)
END MARCH 1976: ANDY WARHOL'S BAD IS SHOT.
According to Bob Colacello, JED JOHNSON started shooting Andy Warhol's Bad in a rented studio on East 19th Street at the end of March. (BC321)
According to David Bourdon, ANDY WARHOL'S BAD went into production in Queens in the Summer of 1976 - a union production costing over a million dollars with a screenplay by PAT HACKETT and GEORGE ABAGNALO. JED JOHNSON, Warhol's boyfriend and the director of ANDY WARHOL'S BAD had helped to edit the Warhol/Morrissey movies post-Lonesome Cowboys. (DB360)
MAY 1976: REGINE'S OPENS.
Regine's nightclub opened on Park Avenue and 59th Street. Warhol often stopped there on his way home after a night out "just for a minute to see if anybody good is there." (BC281)
MAY 1976: HOLLY WOODLAWN GOES HOME.
HOLLY WOODLAWN got a week-long engagement performing in Fort Lauderdale. She stayed with her parents and friend Richard Banks who had a home in Palm Beach.
After Florida, Holly tried to follow Sylvester's example and go mainstream by taking advantage of the disco movement, but failed to get a record deal. She moved to San Francisco for awhile and then back to New York. (HW267-8)
1976: HOLLY WOODLAWN DOES WOMEN BEHIND BARS.
Back in New York, HOLLY WOODLAWN was given the role of understudy to DIVINE in TOM EYENs play Women Behind Bars, directed by RON LINK at the Truck and Warehouse Theater in the East Village - across the street from La Mama.
When BILLY EDGAR (who played Divines sidekick Louise) left the show, Holly was given the role. When Divine left the show, it was announced that Holly would replace her, but when Holly refused to go onstage until she was paid two weeks salary that was owed to her, she was fired from the production. Ron Link claimed that she was drunk during a performance and also accused her of crushing beer cans onstage as well as ripping an earring off one of the girls in the cast and punching her.
Unemployed, Holly took out an ad in Variety that said: Holly Woodlawn ... Now back from the coast - is available for bookings in TV, Film, Stage, and Cabaret. Nobody responded. (HW271-2)
1977: BILLY NAME GOES HOME.
Billy returned to his hometown, Poughkeepsie, N.Y. after hitchhiking around the U.S. After returning to Poughkeepsie, Billy Name went back to college and got a graduate degree in business administration. (UW44)
When Billy telephoned Warhol and HENRY GELDZAHLER to say hi, Henry told Billy that PAUL AMERICA had stolen Billy's Warhol paintings and sold them to buy amphetamine. The stolen items were Billy's legacy gifts from Andy, stored at Henry's apartment for safe-keeping. They included a Jackie tryptich and flower paintings. (B)
1977: HOLLY WOODLAWN DOES GERALDO.
HOLLY WOODLAWNs career was revived after appearing on GERALDO RIVERAs talk show. The subject of the show was sexuality and included a bisexual, various porn stars and CHRISTINE JORGENSON. (HW277) Holly played Renos again. JACKIE CURTIS occasionally showed up drunk and stoned on speed, heckling Holly from the audience.
1977: RUPERT SMITH ASSISTS ANDY.
Rupert replaced ALEX HEINRICI as Warhol's silkscreen printer. (BC365)
APRIL 26, 1977: STUDIO 54 OPENS.
The owners of Studio 54 - Steve Rubell and his lawyer Ian Shrager - had become close friends while at college together in Syracuse and previously had a successful club in Douglaston, Queens called the Enchanted Garden which had been closed down because of complaints by its neighbors. (SL15) The Studio 54 regulars included Andy, Liza Minelli, Bianca Jagger, Halson, Truman Capote and Calvin Klein. (SL55)
MARCH 1977: ANDY WARHOL IS REMOVED.
Andy Warhol's name was taken off the front cover of Interview magazine as news dealers thought potential readers assumed that the magazine was always about Warhol. (BC391)
AUGUST 6, 1977: ANDY WARHOL HAS A BIRTHDAY PARTY.
Warhol had a party at his Montauk house to celebrate his 49th birthday with FRED HUGHES, BOB COLACELLO, JED JOHNSON, PAT HACKETT, CATHERINE GUINNESS, VINCENT FREMONT and fiance SHELLY DUNN (soon to become Shelly Fremont), JAY JOHNSON, TOM CASHIN, SUSAN JOHNSON and her boyfriend BILLY COPLEY.
Warhol "stood on the edge of the room, snapping an occasional Minox looking a little bored and very lonely" and then went to bed leaving the others to celebrate. (BC345)
AUGUST 1977: VINCENT MARRIES SHELLY.
Vincent Fremont secretly married Shelly Dunn in Montauk after wooing her away from Larry Rivers. They gave birth to their first daughter, Austin Grey, in 1982. Andy Warhol was the godfather. (BC375)
AUTUMN 1977: ANDY WARHOL DOES SEX PARTS.
Andy Warhol began his Torsos and Sex Parts paintings which he continued to work on for almost a year. (L&D418)
THANKSGIVING 1977: ANDY WARHOL HAS A DINNER.
JED JOHNSON convinced Andy Warhol to have people over for Thanksgiving dinner at Warhol's 66th Street house "after a big fight".
Dinner was served at the kitchen table rather than in the "beautifully decorated" dining room because, Andy insisted that the dining room was "too fancy to really eat in".
During the evening, Warhol sat in a chair turned away from the table, watching television. According to Bob Colacello, Warhol was "dead drunk", offering Colacello some 1952 Rothschild while slurring his words and turning the sound up on the television. (BC345)
c. 1977 - 1978: THE PISS PAINTINGS.
Warhol's Oxidation Paintings are sometimes referred to as his Piss Paintings, although the Andy Warhol Catalogue Raisonné classifies the Piss Paintings as works where "primed canvas had been stained with urine" in contrast to the Oxidation Paintings where "stained canvases were prepared with a metallic ground." The Oxidation Paintings have been attributed to 1977-78. There may have been earlier Piss Paintings although the cat. rais. notes that "all of the urine stained works" from Warhol's studio "suggest that they were all made at the same time in 1977 - 1978." (RN469) According to Bob Colacello, Warhol started doing the paintings in December 1977 (BC339), although the artist also made reference to his "piss paintings" in a 1976 interview. (See Andy Warhol's Piss Paintings.)
CHRISTMAS 1977: THE FACTORY PARTY.
JED JOHNSON showed up for the Factory Christmas lunch with a bruise on his forehead, "where Andy had slammed a door in his face." Warhol's gifts to the staff were Electric Chair prints which the Factory could "barely sell for $200 to clients." (BC345)
For Christmas, Warhol refused to let Jed Johnson have a party at their house, but FRED HUGHES, BARBARA ALLEN and BOB COLACELLO met there before going to HALSTON's Christmas Eve dinner. Warhol had the flu and "drank the larger part of a bottle of cognac, claiming it would make him better." (BC346)
DEC. 31, 1977: BOB DALLESANDRO DIES.
JOE DALLESANDROs brother, Bob, who had once worked as Andys chauffeur for five years, was found dead in his apartment choked to death after practicing auto-asphyxiation - something which Joe had also practiced for a short period of time.
The police claimed the death was accidental but Joe believed it was suicide. Joe's foster mother died not long after and, soon after that, Joe's wife, Terry, served him with divorce papers on grounds of abandonment.
Still living in Europe and unable to cope with the deaths, Joe started drinking heavily and using drugs again. His girlfriend, Stefania left him after he attempted suicide by trying to hang himself while drunk. (JOE27-9)
Joe and Bob Dallesandro
JAN. 1978: ANDY PLANS A MUSICAL.
ANDY WARHOL and BOB COLACELLO met with producer LUCY JARVIS at the home of EARL and CAMILLA MCGRATH to discuss doing a Broadway play of Warhol's life. Andy wanted Shaun Cassidy to play him and Kate Smith to play his mother. (BC370)
ca. 1978: FRED HUGHES GETS MS.
FRED HUGHES' physical problems from MS began to surface. (BC373)
ca. APRIL 1978: HALSTON, LIZA MINNELLI, BIANCA JAGGER AND ANDY WARHOL PERFORM.
They performed as an act at Studio 54's first anniversary party. The audience reaction was "unresponsive." (BC352)
APRIL 1978: ANDY WARHOL TAKES DRUGS.
After dinner with Mick Jagger and Jerry Hall, ANDY WARHOL, BOB COLACELLO and BARBARA ALLEN retreated to Jagger's hotel where drugs were shared. (BC374)
MAY 1978: XENON OPENS.
On the day that the disco Xenon opened, the Factory got a telephone call saying that there was going to be a bomb at the opening party but Warhol was going to four parties that night and didn't know which one the caller was referring to. Later at Studio 54, Bob Colacello maintained that Warhol was on vodka, Valium and Quaaludes. (BC366)
SPRING/SUMMER 1978: COCAINE COWBOYS IS FILMED.
TOM SULLIVAN, a 'drug smuggler' rented Warhol's Montauk property for three months and filmed Cocaine Cowboys there. Andy Warhol appeared in a cameo role. (LD422-4)
Andy Warhol [Nov. 1, 1978]:
"Tom Sullivan came by to show Cocaine Cowboys to us on a Betamax. He was smoking marijuana, and it was funny to smell it at the office. Paul Morrissey watched a little of it and said it was too slow, and Brigid was in and out and thought so, too, but I liked it. And I decided I'm not so bad in it. They only let me do one take and I think if I'd been able to do more I would have gotten better. But I was better than in my first film, The Driver's Seat". (AWD179)
ca. SPRING/SUMMER/EARLY AUTUMN 1978: JACKIE CURTIS HAS ANOTHER WEDDING.
JACKIE CURTIS staged his final fake wedding. The groom was called Snakeyes and the bride (Jackie) was given away by Leo Castelli.
Jackie had met Snakeyes in the East Village when Curtis noticed him hanging out his window and put him in his next play, Champagne.
At the wedding Jackie held up an astrological chart he had made showing how his staged weddings had come full circle and why this had to be the last one.
Curtis had first staged a fake wedding in 1969. This was the the 8th and final one. It took place at No. 1 Fifth Avenue and was attended by both Andy Warhol and Jean Michel Basquiat. Seated next to them was Jackie's close friend, Melba LaRose, who had tap danced at Jackie's very first wedding in 1969. (MLR)
AUGUST 1978: HALSTON GIVES WARHOL A 50TH BIRTHDAY PARTY.
Bob Colacello: "Steve Rubell gave Andy a silver garbage pail filled with one thousand brand-new dollar bills, and he and Victor [Hugo] dumped it over Andy's head. Andy scrambled to pick up every single single off Halston's floor". (BC384)
1978: HOLLY WOODLAWN MEETS THE QUEEN MUM.
WOODLAWN went to London to perform her cabaret act for three weeks at the nightclub, Country Cousins, and met the Queen Mother at the Old Vic Theatre. (HW283)
1978: HALSTON RENTS ANDY WARHOL'S MONTAUK COMPOUND. (BC347)
END NOV. 1978: ANDY, BOB AND FRED GO TO THE IRANIAN EMBASSY.
ANDY WARHOL, BOB COLACELLO and FRED HUGHES attended dinner at the Iranian embassy on Fifth Avenue for the last time. At the dinner, they discussed BRIGID BERLIN (POLK) who was going to Alcoholics Anonymous to clean up. (BC405)
DEC. 1978: STUDIO 54 IS RAIDED.
The disco was raided by federal agents armed with guns and a search warrant. Co-owner IAN SCHRAGER was arrested for possession of cocaine. (www.drakkar91.com/54/) The FBI called the Factory and asked to speak to Warhol. (BC423)
1979: ANDY WARHOL'S INTERVIEW BREAKS EVEN.
Interview magazine finally broke even - the ad pages having dramatically increased from 93 in 1976 to 162 in 1977 to 225 in 1978 and almost 400 in 1979 - although circulation remained less than 100,000. (BC393)
JAN. 27 - MAR. 10, 1979: SHADOWS AT HEINER FRIEDRICH.
Andy Warhol's Shadow paintings were exhibited at the Heiner Friedrich Gallery, NY. (L&D505)
FEBRUARY 1979: CONVERSATIONS WITH CAPOTE IN INTERVIEW.
The series of short stories by Truman Capote began with the February 1979 issue. They were later published in book form as Music for Chameleons. Truman had appeared on Interview's January cover, with an interview inside the issue. He also had a facelift in February. (BC406)
1979: JACKIE CURTIS GETS PUBLISHED.
Jackie's poetry was published in The Unmuzzled Ox: The Poets' Encyclopedia. His poem, B-Girls, was the longest poem in the book, taking up eight pages. It was based on the customers who hung out at Jackie's grandmother's bar - Slugger Ann's - located on the lower east side of New York.
SPRING 1979: ANGUS MACLISE DIES.
The Velvet Underground's original percussionist died in Katmandu, Nepal at the age of 41. According to his friend, Ira Cohen, the "circumstances of Angus's death were, I suppose, closing walls of karma, consumption & intestinal malady intensified or brought on by junk [heroin]. He is said to have ripped out the feeding tubes from nose & arm in the last days..."(GMW123)
Angus MacLise in Katmandu, Nepal (ca. 1978)
(photo: Ira Cohen)
SUMMER 1979: HOLLY WOODLAWN PLAYS KITTY WITH DIVINE.
HOLLY WOODLAWN was cast as DIVINES sidekick, Kitty La Rue, in Neon Woman (based loosely on The G-String Murders by stripper GYPSY ROSE LEE) for the summer run in Provincetown. (HW287)
JUNE 1979: STEVE RUBELL IS CHARGED.
STEVE RUBELL and IAN SCHRAGER, co-owners of STUDIO 54, were charged with tax evasion, obstruction of justice and conspiracy. (www.drakkar91.com/54/)
JULY 1979: ANDY, TRUMAN & CURLEY PROMOTE.
ANDY WARHOL and TRUMAN CAPOTE did an Interview promotion in Southampton, signing copies of the magazine. Accompanying Warhol was JAMES "CURLEY" MELLON, who Bob Colacello referred to as Warhol's "latest crush." (JED JOHNSON was still living with Warhol at the time.) (BC408)
AUTUMN 1979: HOLLY WORKS AT BENIHANA.
NEON WOMAN played Chicago to bad reviews and closed early. HOLLY WOODLAWN returned to New York to a faltering career and ended up cutting her hair and moving back to her parents home in Miami, getting a busboy job at Benihana of Tokyo. (HW290)
NOVEMBER 1979: ANDY WARHOL PROMOTES EXPOSURES.
Andy Warhol went on a promotional tour lasting more than three weeks to hype the book, Andy Warhol's Exposures. (BC435) Washington D.C. was the first stop on the tour. At a dinner for "a dozen capital grandees" at the Jockey Club at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel, Fred Hughes offered the wife of Senator John Heinz some cocaine while the Senator was interviewing Warhol for the television show, 20/20. (BC434)
DEC. 1979: STUDIO 54 IS BUSTED AGAIN.
Studio 54 owners STEVE RUBELL and IAN SCHRAGER were busted again - this time by 50 IRS agents. The bust came about as a result of a disgruntled employee and an article that was published in the November 12, 1979 issue of New York magazine. (www.drakkar91.com/54/)
The New York magazine cover story exposed Studio 54's List of Party Favors which included poppers for Bianca Jagger, cocaine for other celebrities and "$800 for Andy Warhol's Garbage Pail on his Birthday."(BC423)
Warhol's reaction was: "You mean they told me there was a thousand dollars in there and it was only eight hundred? Oh, I knew I should've counted it." (BC423)
The following month STEVE RUBELL and IAN SHRAGER were sentenced to 3 1/2 years in prison and fined $20,000 each for tax evasion. They were released after 13 months after informing on rival club owners. (SL61)