Warhol superstars were a clique of New York City personalities promoted by the pop artist Andy Warhol during the 1960s and early 1970s. These personalities appeared in Warhol's artworks and accompanied him in his social life, epitomizing his famous dictum, "In the future everyone will be famous for fifteen minutes". Warhol would simply film them, and declare them "superstars".
The first recognised superstar was Baby Jane Holzer, whom Warhol featured in many of his early film experiments. The superstars would help Warhol generate publicity while Warhol offered fame and attention in return. Warhol's philosophies of art and celebrity met in a way that imitated the Hollywood studio system at its height in the 1930s and 1940s.
Among the best-known of Warhol's superstars was Edie Sedgwick. She and Warhol became very close during 1965 but their relationship ended abruptly early in the next year. Warhol would continue to associate himself with people including Viva, Candy Darling, Ultra Violet, Nico and International Velvet.
Warhol's studio, The Factory, played host to most of his superstars and as his experiments in film continued he became more interested in the bohemian eccentrics attracted to the studio. Some of the most important superstars to emerge from the period of the first Factory (known as the 'Silver Factory' because silver foil had been applied to the walls and ceilings) include Paul America, Ondine, Taylor Mead, Rolando Peña, Mary Woronov, Eric Emerson, Gerard Malanga, Billy Name, Brigid Berlin and Sappheo.
In the later films, made in collaboration with Paul Morrissey, Warhol brought in new superstars including Joe Dallesandro, Penny Arcade, Andrea Feldman, Jane Forth, Geraldine Smith, and Sylvia Miles. During this period Warhol developed an increasing fascination with trans women and drag queens, and promoted Candy Darling, Holly Woodlawn and Jackie Curtis to superstar status.
Warhol significantly reduced his public accessibility after being shot by Valerie Solanas in 1968. The age of the Warhol superstar soon faded.
List of Warhol superstars
- Allen Midgette
- Andrea Feldman
- Benedetta Barzini
- Bibbe Hansen (mother of musician Beck)
- Billy Name
- Brigid Berlin
- Candy Darling
- Cherry Vanilla
- Chuck Wein
- Cyrinda Foxe
- Ed Hood (actor in Warhol's My Hustler)
- Edie Sedgwick
- Elecktrah Lobel (actress who starred in Kitchen and The Life of Juanita Castro)
- Eric Emerson
- Fred Herko
- Gerard Malanga
- Holly Woodlawn
- Ingrid Superstar
- Isabelle Collin Dufresne (Ultra Violet)
- Ivy Nicholson (Batman Dracula; Couch; Four Stars; I, a Man; John and Ivy)
- Jack Smith
- Jackie Curtis
- Jane Forth
- Jane Holzer
- Jayne County
- Joe Campbell
- Joe Dallesandro
- Louis Waldon (The Nude Restaurant, Lonesome Cowboys, San Diego Surf, Flesh, Blue Movie)
- Mario Montez (Batman Dracula; Camp; The Chelsea Girls; Harlot; Hedy; Mario Banana; More Milk, Yvette)
- Mary Woronov
- Naomi Levine
- Pat Ast
- Paul America
- Richard Bernstein (artist who did the covers of Interview for 15 years)
- Rolando Peña (also known as El Principe Negro / The Black Prince)
- Ruby Lynn Reyner
- Sally Kirkland
- Susan Bottomly (later known as International Velvet)
- Taylor Mead
- Watson, Steven (2003), "Factory Made: Warhol and the Sixties" Pantheon Books, pp. 10–12
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- Watson, Steven (2003), "Factory Made: Warhol and the Sixties" Pantheon Books, p. 177
- Watson, Steven (2003), "Factory Made: Warhol and the Sixties" Pantheon Books, pp. 210–217
- Watson, Steven (2003), "Factory Made: Warhol and the Sixties" Pantheon Books
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- Genzlinger, Neil (18 June 2021). "Allen Midgette, an Ersatz Andy Warhol, Dies at 82 - In a prank, or perhaps a piece of performance art, Mr. Midgette pretended to be the famed artist on a lecture tour in 1967". The New York Times. Retrieved 18 June 2021.
- Hass, Nancy (18 June 2021). "Brigid Berlin, Andy Warhol's Most Enduring Friend - Berlin, who died last year, was a great artist in her own right, and her New York apartment, which is being sold, is a window into a bygone era in the city's history". The New York Times. Retrieved 20 June 2021.
- "Ingrid Superstar". The Daily Telegraph. Archived from the original on 18 August 2013. Retrieved 1 May 2017.
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- Warholstars Andy Warhol Films, Art and Superstars