Eddie Sedgwick was the inspiration for Andy Warhol – and her “pampered” sister: her sister

Alice Sedgwick Wall didn’t think much of her little sister Eddie Sedgwick—the garish Warhol star and pop art icon who set New York on fire in the 1960s with her flamboyant beauty, silver-haired man, and headstrong extravagance.

“I just thought it was impossible,” Wall told The Post.

As Eddie roamed Manhattan in signature black tights and chandelier earrings, burning off her $80,000 inheritance in six months, Wall — 12 years her senior — was dealing with a brand-new baby and grieving two siblings, who had recently died within ten months after some some.

By comparison, Eddie looked like a “silly spoiled kid,” 91-year-old Bean recalls. (She said a lot in the voluminous oral history of Jane Stein and George Plimpton, “Eddie: An American Biography, “Published 1982.”) “I was working in East Harlem, I was so upset and worried about the Civil Rights Movement, and then there was the Vietnam War about to happen. She added… I couldn’t see the target.” “I didn’t understand who she was or what she represented.”

Eddie Sedgwick sitting at the Velvet Underground guest table at a 1966 dinner hosted by the New York Society of Clinical Psychiatry at the Hotel Delmonico.
Eddie Sedgwick sitting at the Velvet Underground guest table at a 1966 dinner hosted by the New York Society of Clinical Psychiatry at the Hotel Delmonico.
Redferns
Before you take the Manhattan art scene by storm: Young Eddie with Skunk the Pony.
Before you take the Manhattan art scene by storm: Young Eddie with Skunk the Pony.
Courtesy of FSG

Then, in 2017 — 46 years after Eddie died of a drug overdose at the age of 28 — Wall happened in the 1966 Andy Warhol film, “outer and inner space. The short demo features Eddie, expressive and wide-eyed, reacting to footage of her playing on a TV screen behind her. Wohl installed.

“When I saw her, I saw what she had,” said Wall, “for Warhol made it very clear how alive, lively, and wonderful she was.” “I was fascinated by them.”

Now, she hopes to “set the record straight.” Her new book,”As it turns out: Thinking of Eddie and Andy(Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, Out Now), they revisit Eddie’s life and partnership with artist Andy Warhol, which was crowned by the princess of his silver factory and the leading lady in the movie Underground, later blamed for her drug descent.

“When I saw her, I saw what she had, because Warhol made it very clear how alive, lively and wonderful she was,” says Sister Alice Sedgwick Wall of Eddie and Andy. “I was fascinated by them.”
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“I said things in public that I realized were not only wrong, but stupid,” Wall said.

“I [now] You can see how important it is and how extraordinarily relevant it remains to this community.”

Eddie’s problems began long before her affair with Warhol and his amphetamine-filled scene at the factory. By then she had already developed an eating disorder, spent time in two mental institutions, had an abortion, crashed her father’s car, lost two siblings (Bobby, in a motorcycle accident, and Minty, from suicide) and endured the manipulations. “Mysterious,” her cruel, narcissistic father.

“I think that if Eddie’s fate is doomed, it is because of [our father] declared that she was mentally ill and [had her] psychedelic,” said Wall, after she went in and fucked the neighbor’s wife. “This is the tragedy.”

Sister Alice Sedgwick Wall now sees her sister from a new and more positive perspective.
Sister Alice Sedgwick Wall now sees her sister from a new and more positive perspective.
Macmillan Publishing

Edith “Minthorn” Sedgwick was born in 1943, the seventh of eight children, in Santa Barbara, California. Her family boasts politicians, editors and millionaires – Edith Minthorn Stokes’ aunt, who goes by the name Eddie, Posted by community painter John Singer Sargent. But Eddie’s father, “Fuzzy,” and long-suffering wife Alice abandoned the East Coast and decided to raise their brood on a succession of farms in California.

There, “Fuzzy” took up livestock and intimidated his family. Wall, the eldest child, said he named it an erotica because he said it looked like a “sausage.” Nicknamed his son Minty “an old, stooped woman,” he regularly cheated on his wife, making her and her sister Suki, according to Eddie, “sit in a sphinx-like position with breasts exposed on top of the pillars surrounding the entrance to the driveway.” (Eddie also told her friends that she had endured his sexual movements since age seven).

“It can be really tough,” Wall, the eldest, told The Post. “But he wasn’t so hard on Eddie [he was with the other children]. ‘ Probably because the dark-haired, brown-eyed Eddie was so beautiful.

Andy Warhol and Eddie Sedgwick, the darling of his underground movies, attended a party in New York City for Vidal Sassoon in 1965.
Andy Warhol and Eddie Sedgwick, the darling of his underground movies, attended a party in New York City for Vidal Sassoon in 1965.
ANL/Shutterstock

“I don’t remember her ever raising cattle,” Wall added. “She was different from all of us since she was born. She was the prettiest yet, and she was very self-confident…Our parents did whatever they wanted and spoiled her.”

Eddie, with her sixth child Kate and youngest Sookie, had almost no contact with the outside world. (Wall and the next four children went to school and spent time with their family on the East Coast.) They lived with their nanny in a separate cottage on the farm and went to school on the estate as well. Eddie was on the saddle at 14 months old; Her favorite thing was riding bareback at night during storms.

“Eddie was like a wild child,” Wall recalls. “She wasn’t really interested in reading. She had quite a bit of education. … She was a great and beautiful athlete [horseback] Ryder, and she loved driving my dad’s car fast.”

Eddie practicing judo with actress Susan Hoffman on the set of the demo
Eddie practices judo moves with actress Susan Hoffman on the set of the experimental movie “Ciao! Manhattan.”
Batman Archive

As she writes in her book, “What Eddie always wanted was to experience life with the greatest intensity, and she had no regard for danger.”

After two failed attempts at boarding school and two stints in a bulimia mental institution, Eddie arrived in Cambridge, Massachusetts (where nearly all of her siblings went to school) in 1963 to study sculpture. She signed with a sophisticated gay crowd at Harvard, and a year later emigrated with them to New York City. She was like a monstrous creature being released in this dazzling city. Her lavish shopping, her risky driving (parking her Mercedes at the bus station, buzzing through lights and over high-acid barriers) and her bold fashion sense (fur worn over tights and a dress—and nothing else). By the time Warhol met her in 1965, she was already a legend.

Wealthy Sedgwicks Connected to Politics WASP-y (One Eddie Warhol Flick Called
Wealthy, politically connected Sedgwicks WASP-y (one Eddie Warhol flick called “Poor Little Rich Girl”) rides on a pony in 1949.
Courtesy of FSG

“She was in the gossip columns every single day, and she was so famous and so sexy and so amazing that Bob Dylan suddenly called her out. [to ask her on a date]Wall said. “That was Eddie—nothing to do with Warhol. It was really exciting and exciting to have.”

“Society changed after Eddie and Andy – and society was ready for that.”

Alice Sedgwick Wall, author of a new memoir about her little sister’s sight

But Warhol saw something else in Eddie: a creative partner who could enhance his glamor quotient and get him involved in films. Within weeks, they debuted as a “couple”—Warhol was gay, they were more like BFFs—at the opening of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, both with silver machine gun hair. Soon she was also starring in his films.

Eddie was an electrician on screen and didn’t need a script that fit Warhol just fine: he just liked turning on the camera and walking away. He filmed her applying makeup in “Poor Little Rich Girl”, arguing in bed with a cute boy in “Beauty #2” and sitting around smoking in “Vinyl”. In a way, she has always been captivating.

“I guess Eddie didn’t even know what the movie was,” Wall said, adding that the kids never went to the movies while they were on the farm. “When Warhol made these films with her, I think it was just herself.”

Eddie and Andy’s stormy romance lasted barely a year. By the end of 1966, their relationship soured. Eddie started hanging out with Dylan and his crew, who said she was wasting her time with Warhol’s Underground movies when she could be a big Hollywood star. She accused Warhol of making fun of her and making her look stupid in his films.

Little Edie cools off in the pool in the summer of 1945.
Little Eddie is resting in the pool in the summer of 1945. “She was different from all of us since she was born,” Wall says of her sister.
Courtesy of FSG

She escaped Warhol, but a Hollywood career never materialized. By then, she was so far off medication that her usually silent parents had to step in, sending her back to California and to the hospitals there. Warhol—harmed by her infidelity but also a merciless future prospect—has distanced himself from her, and found other stars to promote (though none of them have ever been shown quite brightly). In 1971, she married fellow hospital patient, Michael Post, but died of a barbiturate overdose just four months later at 28.

Eddie: An American Girl by Jane Stein
There have been several Edie bios, documentaries, tributes, and a (too bad) autobiography, starring Sienna Miller.

However, her image remains. There have been several Edie bios, documentaries, tributes, and a (too bad) autobiography, starring Sienna Miller. Since her death she has inspired fashion designers (including John Galliano and Anna Sui) and artists. The films she made with Warhol foretold today’s reality shows and Instagram reels – a celebration of image, being, and personality. She was such an influential figure, and we still live in the world that she and Warhol made.

“Other people were living in the past, but they were living in the future,” Wall said. “I think of what happened after the French Revolution, when there was this sudden rise of the romantic spirit and people living their passionate and wild lives and looking for mountainous landscapes and radical experiences and sexual liberation. [The 1960s] It was such a moment. …society changed after Eddie and Andy, and society was ready for that. “

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