One person in the 60s fascinated me more than anybody I had ever known. And the fascination I experienced was probably very close to a certain kind of love” – Andy Warhol.
Text: Leonidas Liolios
Born Edith Minturn Sedgwick in 1942, Edie was to become The Superstar of the Superstar legion of Andy Warhol, the father of Pop art. Described by the latter as the impersonation of “Poor Little Rich Girl”, the 60s fallen icon has lived a short yet intense life filled with fame and decadence.
Heir to the inventor of the elevator. Old money minus the bourgeoisie of the 50s. A girl that had more problems than any girl anyone ever met. Lost her two brothers to suicide. Got abused by her cruel father. Later on studied art and left for New York to live it big.
1964 to 1965, she meets “The Great Andy Warhol”, together they vandalise the all-American lifestyle foaming POP and spreading brillo boxes and soup cans one film at a time. She is the reason Warhol quits painting and dedicates himself to the silver screen. Embraced by European press they travel the world together making headlines and headlines alone. The expenses of Warhol’s vision are paychecked by a network of fallen heirs craving to be part of a hub. Such was Edie. Though she had much more to offer than her dollars and chandelier earrings.
Her Majesty Diana Vreeland decides to put her under contract with Vogue. A Vogue in its best, creatively speaking. Edie is the It Girl! and teenagers around the world die to get in her shoes.
In less than a year in the forefront of the Warholian silver culture, Edie is introduced to legendary Bob Dylan. He sings songs of love and war, seeing life the way it is. Seeing Edie the way she is supposed to be. Bringing her down to earth one song, stroll, ride at a time. Warhol becomes furious. The duel between him and Dylan is the reason why she chooses to leave the latter be. Warhol though found himself another Superstar to play with.
Edie got into drugs before getting dumped by The Factory. The sorrow of her being a tragic version of the “on-fire” Edie Sedgwick devastated her more that the fact that her parents stopped supporting her financially to a point she got to cadging to get her dose. Trying to get up on her feet she asked Vreeland for a new contract with Vogue, but her own lifestyle made her image vulgar even for the 60s scene. It is a few months later, stoned as she was that she faced Warhol at a restaurant shouting at him and his factory for destroying her life by taking advantage of her to earn fame. Warhol then announced that Bob Dylan is getting married giving Edie the final shot that made for an emergency withdrawn from New York City.
She spent a few years at a re-hub clinic, with all the support she could get. Married to a fellow patient she died of overdose in 1971. She was 28 years old.
Andie Warhol: What emotions are supposed to be.. I mean.. It’s too hard to care. I mean I still care but it would be so much nicer not to care. It’s just easier being detached.
Reporter: What about Edie?
Andie Warhol: Oh, what about Edie? I haven’t seen her in years.
Reporter: You know she died yesterday.
Andie Warhol: Oh, yeah,
Reporter: Do you think your break-up had something to do with that detachment?
Andie Warhol: Well it wasn’t a break-up, that makes it sound like we were.. I mean this is gonna be really hard if.. you know it was just so long ago, I mean I hardly know her at all.