Contact Warhol: Photography without End

2021
Author(s)
Richard Meyer
Publisher
MIT Press
Contact Warhol: Photography without End

Andy Warhol's daily practice of photography during the last decade of his life, examined and documented for the first time.

“A picture means I know where I was every minute. That's why I take pictures.”—Andy Warhol

From 1976 until his death in 1987, Andy Warhol was never without his camera. He snapped photos at discos, dinner parties, flea markets, and wrestling matches. Friends, boyfriends, business associates, socialites, celebrities, passers by: all captured Warhol's attention—at least for the moment he looked through the lens. In a way, Warhol's daily photography practice anticipated our current smart phone habits—our need to record our friends, our families, and our food. Warhol printed only about 17 percent of the 130,000 exposures he left on contact sheets. In 2014, Stanford's Cantor Center for the Arts acquired the 3,600 contact sheets from the Warhol Foundation. This book examines and documents for the first time these contact sheets and photographs—Warhol's final body of work

Peggy Phelan and Richard Meyer analyze the contact sheets, never before seen, and their importance in Warhol's oeuvre. Accompanying their text and other essays are reproductions of contact sheets, photographs, and other visual material. The contact sheets present Warhol's point of view, unedited; we know where he was every minute because a photograph remembers it.

Copublished with the Cantor Arts Center

About the Author

Peggy Phelan is the Ann O’Day Maples Chair in the Arts Professor of Theater & Performance Studies and English. Publishing widely in both book and essay form, Phelan is the author of Unmarked: the politics of performance (Routledge, 1993); Mourning Sex: performing public memories (Routledge, 1997; honorable mention Callaway Prize for dramatic criticism 1997-1999); the survey essay for Art and Feminism, ed. by Helena Reckitt (Phaidon, 2001, winner of “The top 25 best books in art and architecture” award, amazon.com, 2001); the survey essay for Pipilotti Rist (Phaidon, 2001); and the catalog essay for Intus: Helena Almeida (Lisbon, 2004). She edited and contributed to Live Art in Los Angeles, (Routledge, 2012), and contributed catalog essays for Everything Loose Will Land: 1970s Art and Architecture in Los Angeles (Mak Center, 2013), Haunted: Contemporary Photography, Video, and Performance (Guggenheim Museum, 2010); WACK! Art and the Feminist Revolution (Museum of Contemporary Art, 2007); and Andy Warhol: Giant Size (Phaidon, 2008), among others. Phelan is co-editor, with the late Lynda Hart, of Acting Out: Feminist Performances (University of Michigan Press, 1993; cited as “best critical anthology” of 1993 by American Book Review); and co-editor with Jill Lane of The Ends of Performance (New York University Press, 1997). She contributed an essay to Philip Ursprung’s Herzog and De Meurron: Natural History (CAA, 2005).

She has written more than sixty articles and essays in scholarly, artistic, and commercial magazines ranging from Artforum to Signs. She has written about Samuel Beckett for the PMLA and for The National Gallery of Ireland. She has also written about Robert Frost, Michael and Paris Jackson, Olran, Marina Abramovic, Dziga Vertov and a wide range of artists working in photography, dance, architecture, film, video, music, and poetry.  She has edited special issues of the journals Narrative and Women and Performance. She has been a fellow of the Humanities Institute, University of California, Irvine; and a fellow of the Humanities Institute, The Australian National University, Canberra, Australia. She served on the Editorial Board of Art Journal, one of three quarterly publications of the College Art Association, and as Chair of the board. She has been President and Treasurer of Performance Studies International, the primary professional organization in her field. She has been a fellow of the Getty Research Institute and the Stanford Humanities Center. She won a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2004. She chaired the Department of Performance Studies at New York University and the Drama Department at Stanford University.