Monday, February 18, 2019
Pie in the Sky :: Essays Papers
Pie in the SkyAmong the oddballs and exhibitionists who c proclivityered around Andy Warhol in the 1960s and70s perhaps the scariest was Brigid Berlin, a chubby, motorm bulge outhed rebel from an upper-crust New York City family who relished the way her thermionic valve celebrity embarrassed her proper conservative parents. Her father, Richard Berlin, a friend of Richard M. Nixon and an wiz of Senator Joseph R. McC crafthy, ran the Hearst Corporation, which he had helped save from bankruptcy in the 40s. Her mother, Honey, was an elegant,ladies-who-lunch-style socialite of the old school.Ms. Berlin was one of Warhols favourite telephone companions, and she tape hundreds of hours of their conversations, some of which were adapted into a play called porc that flaunted the Berlin family strife. Like many of Warhols acolytes, she fancied herself an artist and was one of the first art world personages to work with a portable tape recorder and Polaroid snapshots (she specialised in dou ble exposures).Her more notorious antics included a representation performance in which she telephoned her parents from the stage without their knowledge and broadcast live her mothers stormy tirade about her lifestyle and choice of friends. That lifestyle included an addiction to speed (in the 1966 Warhol movie, The Chelsea Girls, she played a pill-pushing lesbian who shoots up in crusade of the camera) as well as an eating disorder that pushed her weight to 260 pounds. contempt her obesity, Ms. Berlin often appeared nude in Warhols movies, displaying not a trace of self-consciousness.Excerpts from her taped conversations with Warhol and with her mother run through Pie in the Sky The Brigid Berlin Story, Shelly Dunn Fremont and Vincent Fremonts unsettling close-up portrait of Ms. Berlin, which opens at once at the Film Forum. This fascinating but somewhat repellent documentary repeatedly contrasts interviews with Ms. Berlin filmed devil years ago when she turned 60 with ex cerpts from the mostly black-and-white Warhol films in which she radiated the aggressive ferocity of a B-movie prison house matron.Much slimmer today than in the Warhol years, Ms. Berlin, who lives on the East Side of Manhattan with two dogs, looks sleek and matronly at 60. But when she reminisces, it becomes clear that she retains a lust for the spotlight along with a continuing inability to edit what comes out of her mouth. As she chattily recounts a life of squandered privilege and insensible opportunity, the movie casts a bitter chill.