ANDY WARHOL SUPERSTAR JANE FORTH ON THE FACTORY DAYS – EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW

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Andy Warhol and Jane Forth

When Warhol Superstar Jane Forth met Andy Warhol, it was in his Madison Avenue brownstone in 1968, and she was just fifteen going on sixteen. One year later, while working in an upper east side antique shop, she received a phone call inviting her to star in Paul Morrissey and Andy Warhol’s film, Trash. From 1969-1971, Forth was side-by-side with Warhol as not only an “Andy Warhol Superstar” but a regular at The Factory – where she worked as a receptionist alongside Joe Dallesandro. She was propelled into a world of glamour and pop culture – coined the “Now New Face” for Life magazine and becoming one of the “It” girls of the era.  She was featured not only in several of Andy’s movies, but in the pages of American Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, and many more magazines of the time. She modeled early wrap dresses for Diane Von Furstenburg, and apprenticed with Halston. Known for her original style, and creative hair and makeup – she inspired many with her look then and now – including the creators of Dallas Buyers Club, who referenced her photos as inspiration for Jared Leto’s character in his Oscar winning role.

We caught up with the Warhol Superstar, as she shared with The Untitled Magazine her memories of her days at The Factory with Warhol, New York City in late 60s, and how it feels to inspire generations.

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Jane Forth and Joe Dallesandro – movie poster for Trash, 1970

Indira Cesarine: How did you meet Andy Warhol and find yourself working at The Factory?

Jane Forth: I’m going to go back really far in my memory bank. Let’s see… I was fifteen years old. I just turned 61 on March 4th, so I have to think all the way back! I had a boyfriend by the name of Jay Johnson. He was my first boyfriend and he had a twin brother. His twin brother was Jed Johnson, who was Andy’s boyfriend for many, many years. Jed lived with Andy for many years. I was seeing Jay, who is still alive and kicking. We had to go meet his twin brother Jed and that was in Andy’s home on Madison Avenue in his brownstone, where he lived with his mother. It’s odd because very rarely did anyone ever get to enter that brownstone, and that was my first meeting, which was actually in his home in his bedroom. It was a very unusual situation, because so many people (except for maybe Paul Morrissey and Jane Jett) were ever in that brownstone—and Fred Hughes. So, Jay had picked something up, and I was sitting in Andy’s bedroom. I remember there was a beautiful powder blue satin quilt on the bed. I was sitting there not even knowing whose home I was in, and just sort of rubbing my hand on this quilt, and I heard a voice go, ‘And who are you?’ I turned around and I said, ‘Oh, hi. I’m Jane. And I’m Jay’s girlfriend’ and that was it.

IC: So you were dating his boyfriend’s twin brother? What a small world!

JF: I know, isn’t that funny? They were identical except one had curly hair and the other one, Jed, had straight hair. They were very mild mannered and they were just the sweetest twins in the world. So that was my first meeting with Andy. I didn’t really come face to face with Andy until maybe a year later at the age of sixteen, and that was when I made Trash for them.

IC: How did you get casted in that?

JF: That was another sort of unusual situation. Because at sixteen, I left school and dropped out. I was still living at home but I just felt like I wasn’t cut out for school. I couldn’t fit into it. I just felt like it wasn’t my loophole in life. I was working for friends of my father, in their antique store on 80th Street and 1st Avenue, and I got a call that I can’t even remember whom it was from. It was from a friend of a friend, and they said to me, ‘Listen, you know that guy with the white hair, Andy Warhol?’ And I said, ‘Yeah, I remember him.’ ‘Well, you know they’re making a movie. There’s a guy named Paul Morrissey who works with Andy, and they’re making this movie and the girl that was supposed to be in it has backed out. You wouldn’t be interested in doing this would you?’ I said, ‘It depends on what it is. What’s it about?’ and they said, “Well it’s sort of like you know… you have to play this girl where you’re in an apartment and a junky burglar breaks in and you’re confronted with him.” And I said, “Okay, what does it pay?” and they said, “$50.” That sounded like a lot of money to me right?

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Jane Forth and Joe Dallesandro

IC: Well you were sixteen?

JF: Yeah, I was fifteen going on sixteen. Plus $50 in those days could get you — let me tell you it could last a long time. You could live in Paris on $50 for like a month or a month and a half. When I think back to that time, I think, how did we survive on so little money? Nothing cost anything! Oh my god, it was like nothing! Fifty cents for a tuna fish sandwich! You know, the subway was a dime. So, I said, ‘Sure, I’ll take that job, but I’m going to make it very clear that I will not take my clothes off. There’s no way so don’t even think about it. I am not disrobing.’ They said fine, and that actually worked in my favor, because everyone in that movie ended up with their clothes off. It actually brought more attention to me when they wrote about the film, since I was the one girl that stayed clothed in it. I think my whole staying clothed thing was from my Catholic upbringing. I had eight years of school with nuns. They set it up for me to meet with Paul Morrissey. They said to me, ‘Here’s the day and the time, and you’re going to go down to this apartment in the West Village, and Paul Morrissey will be there along with this guy named Joe Dallesandro.’ Jed was there also. I went there not really knowing anybody, and Paul just said to me, ‘Okay, this is the deal: you’re going to make up your own lines. There’s no script, there’s only a storyline, and we’re just going to turn the camera on and you’re just going to improv.’

IC: There was no script?

JF: No, no script, and I thought, ‘Oh my god! What have I gotten myself into here?’ because I really had no desire to be an actress of any sort. I was primarily doing it because I wanted to earn the $50. It was Christmas time and I wanted to buy Christmas gifts for my family and that’s why I took the job.

IC: What was your role in the movie?

JF: I played an upscale, richer woman who was a very bored, stay-at-home housewife. Well, I created this myself. This was the most exciting thing in the world– to have this junkie break into my apartment. It’s like, I was so bored day in and day out that this was like ‘Wow, this is fun!’

IC: You must have been so mature for your age, if you were able to create this bored housewife character when you were only sixteen?

JF: Yeah, I always was. I was one of those old souls in a young body. You know what that’s about. You’re attracted and you’re a magnet towards older people, and you have friends that are older, and you just think out of the box. You’re not thinking in your regular sixteen-year-old box, right? So, that’s how I was. It was very interesting because it just sort of skyrocketed after that. All of these things started coming to me—things that I didn’t really plan on. It’s so funny, because my mother has always said to me, ‘Oh my god, if any of these things would have happened to you in this day and age, you would be a very rich young lady.’ Because you’re out in the limelight, and nowadays you become flavor of the month, and you make tons of money instantly. You know, she always says, ‘What a pity. What a pity this didn’t happen to you in a different era.’

IC: Back then, you were an “it” girl – I read you were coined the “Now New Face” for Life magazine?

JF: Not just an “it” girl. Many different things happened to me. I had my finger in many pies, meaning I did things for Andy, right? I also worked with Antonio Lopez to pose for illustrations for the New York Times and Diane Von Furstenburg— her first line of her wrap around dresses. She and Agon put together this thing, right? She decided she was going to make these wrap dresses and all of her fabrics came to Milano. She called me up and she said, ‘Listen, we’re going to be showing my first line of dresses at the Pierre hotel. Can you show them for me?’

IC: So you were modeling for her?

JF: Yeah. So, we’d sit alone in a hotel room and the buyers would come in and I would put on the dresses. What’s so crazy is I had so many of those original wrap around dresses, and I lost them over the years. My girls said to me, ‘Oh my god! Why couldn’t you have kept track of some of those things?’ Then I worked with Charles James and Halston. I apprenticed under him. He was the inspiration for all designers. He created the bias cut. He was just the most amazing.

IC: Did you consider yourself more of a model or an actress? You did quite a few movies with Warhol.

JF: Yeah, I did a number. I don’t even know what I considered myself. Nothing fully took off all the way in either area, even though I had tons of things going. I’ve had a four page spread in Life magazine, I’ve had the cover of the dance magazine After Dark. I did a full nude of the cover of After Dark, and at the time they didn’t do nudes or full nudes on the cover, where it was artistic. I did things in Vogue; I did different things in Bazaar; for Halston; all different things. I was all over the place but never made a great deal of money from any of this.

IC: Were you also working at The Factory? I read you were working as a receptionist there?

JF: For a period of time. These were great times, very special, special times. It was the times alone that were better than any fortune I could put in my pocket; they were times with Andy. I would go to The Factory everyday and Joe Dallesandro would work at one desk and I would work at the other desk. We would take phone calls, let people in. We were pretty much, I think, just fixtures.

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IC: What was it like there day-to-day? Was it always a party scene or was it more of a creative workplace where everyone was busy working?

JF: It was more of a creative workplace when I came into the picture. I was after Viva and Ultra Violet and Edie Sedgwick. People still came up to The Factory but it was in a changing mode. It was more in the mode of when Andy was involved with Fred Hughes. He had a great influence on Andy and was really great at representing him and traveling in a different crowd—a crowd of people who were more elite, who had money, who would buy his artwork.

IC: So he was more serious about his professional life at that time?

JF: Yeah, he was really getting focused in on that. He was really building his fortune at that time. There were a lot of people coming up who were important people in NYC.

IC: How many years did you actually hang out with him?

JF: Two years maybe. I was around from maybe 1968 to 1971. And these times…I had a great time up there. Usually we would check in when we were going to work. By afternoon, I’d go out and have lunch with Andy, and then he would say ‘Let’s go out, I have to go meet with this person, that person’ or ‘I want to go buy some antiques’ or whatever. So I would leave with Fred Peterson and go out for the day, and usually there would be some kind of event at nighttime. Whether it was something at one of the museums or with Manhattan socialites. Fred was very good at getting his foot in the door. And doors would open and a lot of people wanted Andy around, so I went along with him to many places. I began traveling with him when he began having exhibitions in Texas, New Orleans, California, and in Europe, Germany, and France. All of my first trips to Europe were with Andy.

IC: How many people would go with you on those trips? Was it a big posse?

JF: Not a big posse. The trips that I went on were always Andy, Fred Hughes, Paul Morrissey, myself, and Joe Dallesandro. He had this little gang. We would go to all sorts of things. There were a lot of awards. In Germany, he was given a lot of awards for the film Trash. So there were a lot of events we had to go to and speak at, and we would stay at the most beautiful, beautiful hotels. Life was lovely. This was special. Sometimes you go back and speak to those people that have been involved with Andy in the past, and a lot of people were very resentful. They felt like they were used and weren’t given enough money.

IC: Well, I’ve worked with Ultra Violet before. I did a documentary with her and interviewed her about her Warhol days. She was very positive about Andy. I don’t think that she had many negative things to say. You do hear about his art assistants that were working for free, and the fact that he had an entourage of people around that he wasn’t paying.

JF: Negative things. You’ve read about it before. I never ever felt like that. I felt he gave me such wonderful moments to have in my keep chest of my memory; unbelievable times I would never have been able to give to myself. The most special things. It was just amazing. I adored every minute of it. I enjoyed his company so much.

IC: What was he like? Was he really serious or quiet?

JF: There were many faces of Warhol and it depended on your relationship with him and where you came into play with him. I can only speak to my relationship with Andy, in which he was very warm; he was very talkative with me. He was also flirtatious! He could be very flirtatious, absolutely.

IC: Was he bisexual?

JF: I don’t know what he was. I always looked at him as asexual. I couldn’t even think of him as a sexual being. I thought of him sort of as a voyeur, sort of wanting to watch everything happening and not be the participant.

IC: What other movies did you do with him aside from Trash?

JF: There was Trash and the one we did in Paris – L’Amour. There were small things, Women in Revolt. I had a small part in that film.

IC: Were they always improv?

JF: They were always improv. I had a great love of old movies and Andy did too. We would spend many a nights on the telephone at 2:00 or 3:00 in the morning. He’d be watching a movie and I’d be watching the same one on my end. We would have the same channel on, and be talking about it at the same time. So there was a great love of movies and we shared a lot of that together. We spent a lot of weekends in South Hampton, as I remember. Very peaceful, quiet weekends where we would drive out. He had a funny, old brown Mercedes with powdered blue leather interior. We would drive out and always stop, and pick up some crab salad, some strawberry rhubarb pies, and some Yoohoo chocolate milk. And we would take the album Rhapsody in Blue with us. We would put it on the record player and I remember this so well: we would sit outside under a big old giant tree, and music would be coming from the house (it was a big ol’ cottage house), we’d have the New York Sunday Times under this tree. We’d lay under there for hours and read the New York Times. It was very peaceful in South Hampton, in the summertime, on the weekends.

IC: Was that Andy’s house?

JF: No, he was renting it.

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IC: It’s interesting because when people look back on the Warhol days and The Factory days, everybody focuses a lot on the party scene,  the drugs, and the craziness, but actually it seems like it was pretty peaceful and rather intellectual.

JF: That’s how it was when I was in it.

IC: Were there a lot of drugs? Because in the movies they all look wasted. In Ciao Manhattan for example…

JF: No drugs. Not at that time. Those were earlier days. I was in the non-drug days. He didn’t want the drugs. He didn’t want the craziness. He was over that. That phase was over. Now it was down to business.

IC: That’s interesting. People don’t focus so much on that side of The Factory days’ history, they focus on the wildness.

JF: People want to look at the wildness. Maybe they look at the quiet days as boring, but I really looked at it like, ‘Boy, this is magical. This is a very magical time in my life.’

IC: Were there any events that stood out that you could describe in detail?

JF: There was a cocktail party in Paris where I met Claudette Colbert. I remember that being very, very special in this amazing Parisian old, beautiful apartment. Looking at these old movie stars that were mind-blowing to me, because I was obsessed from an early age. I always had an obsession with movie stars, and for me to look at Claudette Colbert in person was amazing. In fact, a lot of those movie stars were what pushed me to create my own image. The image that Life magazine did on “The Face of the 70s”? I based a lot of that look off of images of those movies. So, that was a time that I remember. There were so many little special things that I felt went on. It’s hard to say that one time meant more to me than other times. But I felt like going to those peaceful magical weekends in South Hampton with the music and the crab salad. It wasn’t too crowded in South Hampton yet. It was still pretty rural. There was this peacefulness, and the ocean, and that crab salad. There was something about it… and the music.

IC: What kind of music did he like to play?

JF: Well Fred would bring albums. A lot of it was the Rhapsody in Blue, and beautiful old music from the 1920s and 1930s.

IC: He didn’t like listening to rock music and contemporary music of the time?

JF: No, I felt that it was more music from the 1920s and 1930s. When I was around and the music was on in the house, it was that type of music.

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IC: At that time when you were hanging out with Warhol, you had a very unique makeup look. In the photos of you from that time, the makeup is phenomenal. Can you tell us a little about how you created these looks?

JF: Well, that’s the funny thing. I’m not quite sure exactly what drove me to it. I can only tell you a couple of things. We were transitioning from a period of time that was mod and Twiggy, right? And then hippie, right? I didn’t fall into the mod thing and I felt I didn’t fall into the hippie thing. It still goes back to watching old movies; my great love of the style, the fashions, the lack of the eyebrow and the makeup.

IC: Who were your inspirations?

JF: Claudette Colbert, Myrna Loy, people like this. So I started to find clothing because they didn’t have vintage clothing then. They didn’t have vintage clothing stores—that didn’t exist. Whenever I would obsess over these movies, I said, ‘I’m going to find some clothing like that.’ Where was the best place to go? People didn’t think of going to the Salvation Army to hunt down clothes. All these clothes were donated to the Salvation Army. It had the most amazing clothes from the 1920s and 1930s that would be donated and no one wanted them.

IC: Did Andy go with you or would you do that on your own?

JF: I did that on my own. Except he did go down in California. I bought some amazing gowns of which Life magazine has a number of pictures of me wearing in a series for them. There was a theatrical store that apparently had a box that was full of these old dresses. I would go to these thrift shops along with my friend Cory Tippin, who was a great friend and is still is great friend, and we would go thrift shopping. We would find the clothes, and let’s say if they had to be altered a little bit or whatever, his boyfriend would help us alter them and piece them so they’d fit better.

IC: Did you sew as well or just style it?

JF: Oh, no, I’m not handy with a needle at all! Val, Corey’s boyfriend at the time, would pin it in and alter them. I would find beautiful shoes and clothes, and started wearing them. No one ever wore vintage, so right away it was very unusual to wear something like that. Then I started creating my face in the same way. I looked at old photographs. I started to look at how there were hardly any eyebrows, so I took off my eyebrows completely. I just removed them. And then I realized that when I removed my eyebrows, I could also pencil in any design I wanted where that blank space was. If I wanted to make them thin, I could make them thin. If I wanted to draw in a heavy eyebrow, I could make a heavy eyebrow. But it was always more towards very, very pencil thin. Or I could leave them with nothing. Just be space age. Moon face with moon face; moon face with the old clothing. I was creating old and new together. This was just my own inspiration of working off myself and just creating it out of the love of creating. Then I started to figure out the hair. There were no hair products in those days. There was like Aquanet hairspray and shampoo. There were very little choices for products. I started to like the idea of very shiny hair– shiny hair pulled back, very flat and put in a bun. So that’s how I started to use Wesson oil. I would use cooking oil and I’d slick my hair and make it almost like patent leather!

IC: Was it hard to wash that out or would you leave it in for days?

JF: No, I would leave it in for a day or two and then I would wash it, but I would end up putting it back in.

IC: And did it get on your clothes?

JF: No, I was very neat. I don’t know how I avoided that. I just did what I had to do to get the look that I wanted. Then I started making even my own eye shadows and things like that. Those things didn’t exist then. You didn’t have grey or black eye shadow; there was turquoise and green. So I started to create my own. I wanted smokey eyes at times, so I would use a cork. I would burn a cork, put Vaseline on it, and I would start to apply it onto my eyelids to make a smoky eye. Then I started to do things like put pink on my eye. No one [at the time] would ever put pink on their eye.

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Jane Forth by Jack Mitchell

IC: I saw some stunning photos of you with the pink eye shadow with the no eyebrow. I think Jared Leto found inspiration in that for Dallas Buyers Club. It’s mind blowing how they copied your look – it’s almost verbatim.

JF: I didn’t even know until I read the article in the New York Times. There was another one that said the art directors actually brought in photographs and put them up and said, ‘This is what you’re going to go for, this Jane Forth.’ And you want to know something? What was so funny is that in the movie I know exactly which photo they used, because I saw the makeup duplicated exactly. I can pinpoint the exact photos. It was funny because I’ve had a partner for eighteen years now, and he has a twin brother. When we went to the movies, I didn’t tell the twin brother that the character was designed off of my look. At the end of the movie he came up to me and said, ‘Wasn’t that bizarre how much it looked like you in that film?’ And then I said, ‘That’s because the look was created from some photographs of me.’ I didn’t tell my partner’s twin brother, because I wanted to see if he saw what I saw or if I was just convincing myself, ‘Oh yeah, that looks like that.’ When he came up right after the film and he said, ‘Oh my god, he looked exactly like you’ that’s when I told him.

IC: He has such a pretty face. That Jared.

JF: Oh my god, is that crazy? Is that a man’s face or a woman’s face? Or is that a unisex? And that man is the face of now, where you look like both. If you want to be a man one day or a woman one day. It’s amazing, right?

IC: How did you feel seeing Jared Leto playing you – because it’s your makeup and your look taken from your old photos, how did that feel?

JF: It’s a funny feeling when I see that. I think to myself, ‘That’s really cool.’ It’s really cool not just for me, but I love that my kids get to see this. It’s like a gift that my kids get to have in life. They can look back at these photos and say, ‘Oh wow, that’s really, really neat!’ or something. It’s nice to be appreciated and recognized on some level–to be such inspiration for somebody. But again, my kids will say to me sometimes, ‘You don’t get the credit you should get, mom.’ And I go, ‘It’s okay I don’t mind.’ Always, I don’t get angry about those things. I say, ‘If you guys love it, and if you have fun with it that’s all I care about it.’  I thought it would be nice if someone did a thing called like ‘The Face Behind the Face’ you know? But then there’s a lot of things nowadays. A lot of the runway shows and stuff… I’ve seen them do the whole look. You know, the faces I created. That makes me feel nice. If I leave this world and I’ve been an inspiration for something, then I feel successful. That’s success to me. Whatever it brings. Success doesn’t always have to come in the form of bongo bucks right? Dollars. Just to be an inspiration, I think, is quite an achievement in life. It’s fulfilling.

IC: What do you think about the modern day obsession with The Factory days?

JF: I look at it like this. Like anything, the pendulum always swings back. You know that saying. There’s a saying that if the pendulum of the clock goes forward, it’s always got to come back again. People are always going to dig up the past or look in, because there are special times in life, and they don’t come that often. You’ve got the 1920s, the roaring twenties. And, you’ve got the 1960s, which are very special times, special transitional times. Very certain looks. Very highly creative times. People need inspiration. They need to go and dig this up. They have this desire to look back almost like, what was the mystery? Was it a lot more fun than life is now? Doesn’t life look more exciting then? Was that time so much more special? Let’s try to steal it. Let’s try to live it. Let’s get a sense of that. Where can this take me? Wanting to look and delve into this era of time, I think that people look for inspiration. I think things always look a lot more fun than it was. We’re in such a changing world right now. God knows where it’s going to take people. Everything’s so technical that people– when they’re in the process of changing like we are now—that’s when they start clawing into the past. What can I take from these times and maybe take them along into these new times?

IC: I love what you have to say about how people are looking in the past for the future. Everybody’s confused about what’s happening next.

JF: They look for that, plus, NYC is not the same New York that it used to be. Not to sound like an old fogey, but you used to be able to live in New York and not have a dime in your pocket and be able to survive and exist in that town. Now it’s very driven by money, and you have to have a lot of money to live in NYC. Maybe I’m wrong but I don’t think I am. You have to have a lot of money. You have to have success early in life if you want to be there and live a decent life there. A good life. The times before, you did not have to have money. You could have inspiration on a dime, and creation on a dime.

IC: It wasn’t so expensive, was it? Was it much more creative?

JF: Oh my god, it was so much more creative. You could feel like a Queen or a King and you were really just a pauper with no money. You could survive in that town, and you could always find a place to live, a place to eat, and clothing to put on your back that looked fabulous, without spending a fortune! It was just a different place. It was full with a lot less rich and more poor and creative types.

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Jane Forth – Vogue, 1971

IC: What was it like back then around The Factory in Union Square?

JF: Well, that area, you had the park there. There were no flea markets. It was sort of still industrial. There were no restaurants except for Brownie’s Health Food Store, which was around the corner. There was still–in certain areas of New York–this very Eastern European feel. There were a lot of people who had come over in the 1930s, who had started little businesses, and a lot of these business existed because they would give them forty-year leases for nothing. For $100 a month, forty years. The first apartment I was in was $40 a month! That was in the 1960s. And that included the utilities! The only thing was, in some of the buildings, they used to have a bathroom in the hallway. You’d have a bathtub in your apartment, but there would be a toilet in the hallway with a door and a sink. There’d be one at one end of the hall and one at the other end of the hall, and three of the apartments would share a toilet, and the other apartments in the other end would share the other one. That was in some of the very old rent-controlled buildings. You would have a bathroom in your kitchen, but it would have a tin lid on it so you could disguise it. The highest rent I paid was $550 a month and that was for a loft that I had on 26th Street. When they pulled my rent up to $600 I said, ‘Forget it! That’s way too much. I’m leaving New York and buying a house.’ Then I left my loft and moved to Staten Island.

IC: Could you tell me how Andy decided that somebody was one of his superstars?

JF: You know what? I don’t know how he would decide that. That’s a strange thing. I think he liked anything that inspired him. So if you have a gimmick and it looked like something new and inspirational and whatever, I think he was drawn towards that.

IC: You had such a unique look, so I guess he liked your individuality.

JF: Yeah, he liked that. Plus I think that, well, I can only speak from my own relationship with him, but I feel like there was compatibility in our personalities because of common interests. He was pretty easy going and I was very easy going. I’m trying to think about our relationship. I sort of severed my ties with The Factory in 1971, because I became pregnant at the height of my career. I had gone to Japan for about three months. I had a job there and I was working there, doing commercials and working with Shiseido and all different things. I came back and realized I was pregnant. I decided to have my son, and it was going to affect my career and me. What I did is, I had my son and I stopped. I severed my ties with a lot of things that were going on in my life. I remember Andy got upset with me; he thought I was throwing away a career. It was my own choice and I remember we had a little spat about it. It was the only time I ever had a fight with Andy. We had a fight about me giving up my career. He felt it was the wrong choice to give it up.

IC: How old were you at the time?

JF: I was really young. Seventeen going on eighteen, and then I found myself pregnant. Yes, I did give up my career. It was my choice and I changed my life. I went into a whole different mode. In those days there weren’t a lot of single moms having babies on their own. Again, I was doing something that other people didn’t do. I went off on my own and had a child. I raised my child, my son, until I met my husband at that time, who I stayed married to for 22 years. He was a director of photography from England and he actually ended up doing Miami Vice and a lot of big movies in Hollywood. That’s who I ended up having two other children—my daughters—with. That’s why I have the last name Wood on my name. Oliver Wood. He still works in Los Angeles. Then I went into makeup. After I had my son Emerson–when he was about six years old–I decided to start doing makeup for film work and special effects. I went to school at night, I self taught myself, and I got into the union. For many, many years I worked in the film business with makeup and special effects. Then all of a sudden, in my thirties, I found myself pregnant again, and when we moved to Los Angeles, I decided to give up my makeup career. I gave up another career and decided to have two more babies. My husband at the time was very successful. I had a great opportunity to have children and not have to worry financially about anything. I took care of these two wonderful girls without any financial stress and raise them. It was lovely. I never told my girls about my background until my daughter was in the 8th grade. They were studying something on Warhol and she saw a picture. She came home from school and then I told her everything. Remember when they used to have blockbuster videos? I was in California and we had taken them out one day. We stopped at the video store and Trash had just gotten on the market. There was a picture of me on the back cover and my little one, who was probably four said, ‘Mommy, mommy it looks just like you.’ I didn’t say anything, because they were too young then, but they had found the video in the video store and they had found the picture on the back of it. I waited until my girls got a little bit older to tell them. Because once the internet came out, I knew they were going to find everything. So I just laid it on the line for them. I showed them everything.

IC: You have all of those amazing memories and such an incredible history. It’s really seeing a side of the Warhol era that people don’t expect.  It’s great to hear about his post Edie days where he was very focused on his career, and hear your perspective on it.

JF: Very focused, very driven to make his mark– to really pull it out of that whole subculture and into society. On some level, he was very intrigued by that, but he was very smart and he was a genius.

– Indira Cesarine for The Untitled Magazine

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