Hill: I thought I'd start from the difference between your work and Andy Warhol's.
Morrissey: Chelsea Girls, I guess, was Andy's basic approach to film-making: to be completely detached, not offer any direction, and therefore stylise by indirection. It worked with great success in Chelsea Girls. But Andy never really thinks of the stories or wants to think of them too much. Because as soon as you take a story line you take on a moral position, somewhere or another, just by choosing – well, you always choose the subject matter – in Chelsea Girls, that's one thing – he can't avoid that. I'd prefer the movies to have sort of strong stories. And I prefer to take a position, because I'm more comfortable that way, and Andy's more comfortable not to.
Hill: Do you think Flesh would be quite a different film if he had made it?
Morrissey: Yes. Yes. Much different. Also Andy is so detached in his own way from the film that he never usually deals with singular subjects; they're usually collective subjects like Chelsea Girls or Lonesome Cowboys. I used to make films by myself in 1960, ‘61, ‘61, ‘63 – but they were silent films and they weren't experimental or avant-garde in any way, but they were what they call experimental because they were self-made you know.
Hill: These were made with what sort of outlet in mind, just for your own...?
Morrissey: Yes, the whole self-made cinema movement, whatever you call it, do-your-own-movie, make-your-own movie thing, it was pioneered by Jonas Mekas, about 1950, ‘59, ‘60. And he probably gave publicity in the newspaper, the Village Voice, and there were no outlets for the showings and then somebody showed the movies in the store front, you know. Like you take a store and you just show movies in there, like a little nickelodeon. And they look – they did as they did in an art gallery actually, in East Village, on 10th Street, and they did it on weekends and then just when I went down to the East Village around 1960, ‘61, I couldn't find an apartment so I decided to rent this store because they're easier, you don't have to climb stairs; they're easier to find, they're cheaper, and you could turn it into a nickelodeon and I started operating a nickelodeon and showing other people's films. There were a lot of films being made but there was no outlet for them and I showed them for a couple of months, every night. And I had 50–60 seats, and it was kinda a nice little theatre, but then the police stopped me and then Jonas Mekas asked a theatre in East Village, way over, called the Charles, if they'd like to show them one night a week and they started to show them one night a week and then once a month; they showed them every night for a week or a month, or something, I don't remember what, and suddenly they were on the map, you know. And right around that time Andy, I think, started going into making them. And then for the first few years Andy made them they were silent. His first two years the pics were silent, and I don't think they were hardly shown anywhere – maybe once or twice. When the Charles went out of business Jonas would rent like an off-Broadway theatre somehow and show films there every now and then. And then he had another off-Broadway theatre were Andy made his first sound films, and I met Andy at the Cinematheque where they were showing his sound films; they'd show them for one night maybe. Maybe 150 seats. And he said he was making another sound film next day and asked me just to go up and see them, watch them do it. And up to that point he hadn't moved the camera, it was stationary, and since I was sort of a guest there he said, 'I haven't moved the camera yet, do you think I should start to move the camera?' I said, 'Well, you know, I'd give it a try.' Then he started panning. Because this was on tripod. Basically Andy is known for making unconventional films but actually they're much more consistent with American film-making than most other films made in the sixties. Then after that he went in for hand-held camera movements which came from France and which were supposed to be cinema-verite, which I never liked, but also Hollywood never used hand-held cameras. Still to this day doesn't. We've never ever used hand-held cameras; camera's always been on tripod. And cameras have been moved around a lot like they do in Europe, it's very prosaic, most of it. And also the emphasis is always on the performance, not the directors, which is America's great contribution to film-making. They happened to have the best directors maybe, but all their best directors were people who subsided into the studio format of supervising vehicles for stars and the contrasts to the studio – and I think the best films were made under those conditions. And, of course, New York never had film studios. And they had this old militant, silly, nineteenth-century notion of the artist being some terribly important creator, you know, tormented and introspective and the director was supposed to give his all and – and it was not a notion for American film-making, it was a European notion and in America it was more of a collective effort. But it was mainly a kind of idolatry of people who were stars, you know. And this was Andy's early notion, that anybody found in front of one of his cameras was a super-star. That name caught on.
Hill: When Flesh was first promoted it was promoted with Andy Warhol's name on it.
Morrissey: Well, you see Andy's name is comparable to Walt Disney's. And Andy is a producer of films; he's a film studio, MGM, Walt Disney, Paramount, you know, Andy Warhol. He never ever said he was a director, and Andy's name appeared as director of the films because I put it there; Andy himself never believed in titles on movies or taking any credit for direction. But basically his name is almost generic for a subject matter which has been consistent; the same way Walt Disney's subject matter’s been consistent, in the same way Louis B. Meyer's subject matter was – and Andy just saw this as the role of the artist in this century, I think, to become more of a – what would you call it? – a supervisor. Because the old-fashioned notion of the artist is, you know, an island unto himself – it comes from a period when there wasn't this mass communication; and I don't think it's very attractive today, people who are like that: people like Godard – even Fellini with Satyricom has, I think, given a very disappointing film because he's got such a great opinion of himself. I mean he has no people in his film whatsoever; he's got a lot of puppets who are flipped on and off screen for a few seconds, dubbing a few sounds as though they're lip movements, and there's nobody in the film worth watching and even if they're worth watching they are hardly on the screen long enough to, you know, get a good look at them. It's just like a window decorator doing the Christmas display with 10,000 windows in 10 minutes. But mostly I think the better films are made by directors who don't think of themselves as such hot stuff.
Hill: Do you think that this kind of film-making is anticipating the day when everyone will be their own film-maker on their own cassette system?
Morrissey: Yes, that's it. I think the type of film-making that Andy seized upon was transition-type film-making. It's mainly influenced by television. And films; but more by television. And of course the lack of stories is television because you don't have a story on television; you have people talking to one another. But you know our subject-matter that we were putting out on film could never go on to television so we had to make it fit for theatres and therefore we needed a certain length. For the theatre you have to keep it an hour and a half, make it a story, come around – but the basic approach is to allow the actors to say whatever dialogue they want to say, which is also like television. Somebody goes on television, they say whatever comes into their head if they want to. People playing parts is again a dead art form, I think. I think it doesn't work any more. Acting. And I don't think it's very good in films when I see it; there's just nobody who comes along who acts, really acts, who I think is worth watching. I mean there's Laurence Olivier and he's worth watching as an actor but he's Laurence Olivier and he knows how to act, but young people don't bring it off that well. I never see any.
Hill: But do you think with a new technology and a new communication system and with the ability people will have to shoot their own films and films of the neighbours and so on, everybody would in fact be their own Andy Warhol?
Morrissey: Well yes, except there's no market necessarily for that. Basically Andy's always felt his films are an extension of home movies, you know, a record of friends, either a record of your family or a record of friends or record of your travels. It goes back to the epistolatory novel which was the first novel, letters back and forth between friends. Films were made the way we make them today in the twenties: they were made by the people who made them the day they filmed them usually. And an outline, maybe that's it. And the stars. And they filmed each day and Keaton and people worked like that. And then they said now that we have a talking camera – the talking camera was a great bulky, awkward piece of equipment – they couldn't waste too much time so they had to have it all down on paper first. And this provided some really good films. But in this way it left out for the talking screen the actual technique of film-making that was evolved in the silent screen, just because people had to speak. Actors weren't competent to speak unless they were told what to say. So at the same time as they built up the actors, they crippled or emasculated them a bit by denying them their own dialogue; a human being is supposed to speak himself and so this was unfortunate, and I think Andy went back and corrected that and said if the actor is the most important thing certainly what he has to say will be worth listening to. And this was a great vote of confidence in the performer. If Andy had never started making films I don't think I would have thought of having actors go on and on and on, and of course Andy's very extravagant, letting the film run and run and run; and in the end I think it was very good. You know everybody always says do you mean the actors always make a film now, do we believe; and sometimes people watch us and they say, well I don't believe it; I see the actors just keep on acting – they act, they're acting, but they're not – they're just acting themselves which they are and it's so hard for anybody to do. I wouldn't want to do it any other way really because I realise that this is what Andy's films were leading up to, this type of thing. But I don't find anybody else who does it in the world. You know, there's nobody. And Andy was doing it about five or six years ago. Still no-one will let the performers go in front of the camera and improvise. The one who does it a bit I guess is John Cassavetes. He contradicts the whole thing because he takes actors and tells them to go and improvise acting in front of a camera and somehow I don't think it works. You just tell people to go and stand in front of the camera and talk. They'll act, naturally, because they know there is a camera there, they're acting. But to get trained actors to do it is a sort of contradiction.
Hill: What do you see as the progression now from the point that you've reached? Is it simply the discovery of new people?
Morrissey: Yes, and also we still have an obligation to try to give the people a little permanence. We used to make more films but then they were never shown. Now we make fewer films but at least they get shown and the people start to get well known. We really would like to entrench ourselves for a few years and use a couple of the same people over and over again. Now the other big problem we have is we use people who are not interested too much in films, or acting, and are very young, they're teenagers, almost – nobody ever points out the fact that movies are mostly teenagers. I mean it's almost entirely teenagers. Viva was the only person who was in the late twenties. But in Flesh and in Trash now everybody's still awfully young. There's a girl in Trash who's 16, and there's James Warron, then there's a girl who is like 17, or 18, and the girlfriend in Flesh, Patty Darbanville, who was 16 and is now 18 or 19; she's a big hit here. Have you ever heard of a song called Lady Darbanville? Well it's written about her by Cat Stephens; she's a beautiful girl, you know, fascinating, you know. She's smart and tough and sweet and young and we've known her since she was 13 or 14; she was always more interested than just running around and doing anything. A lot of people who make careers, specially in this day and age – a lot of interesting people today just haven't got ambition and this is more the nature of life today, not to have ambition, not to be committed; and so you come across some young person who comes to you and says they want to be in a film, we'll work hard, do this, do that. Well they're completely artificial and they have no relation to people who go round – they really are like little imitations, people from another time, so it's a great problem to work with people who aren't completely committed and who also are teenagers, because teenagers have so many problems. We haven't been able to establish ourselves so as to have much continuity with too many performers. But now – seeing Andy's films are getting shown more and being more successful – the kids do want to work more. Now Patty's starting a film in France with Michel Simon called La Maison and I think it's very successful, but it was a great big expensive film. And now she wants to – she might screen test for the St Claire part in Zeffirelli; and you know, she wants to do something. And we had her in our film in Paris again and then Jane, who was in Trash, and then Joe in Trash but he didn't come to Paris because gain, you know, it's better that I make a film with him instead of just make a story with one person because he's a very quiet type of person and if there's a lot of people in the scene he won't compete; he'll just clam up. He only speaks when he has to. I think this is very good because I think this is, you know, the tradition in men's acting on the screen – like John Wayne: you only speak when necessary. I mean everything's there for a purpose, but I think the main thing is to be aware of all the movies that were made and what was really good and what survived after years and years go by. I was just looking at a film which was popular, I guess ten years ago; I saw a piece of it, I was going by the theatre over there, in King's Road and I just happened to see somebody and I just stuck my head in and they were showing a movie called The Cousins – 1959/60. It looked like it was a thousand years ago, it was so dated; it was so artificial, these people talking, talking, talking and every time they were saying something it was a little pointed, the line was sort of pointed. A terrible movie. And yet, you know, I remember that movie; you say Claude Chabrol made it. Right, Claude Chabrol. And then you say who was in it, and he says, mm, who, mm, well you know the movie's not going to last; and you look at the people and they're sort of not so interesting. But you know I think you remember Camille with Greta Garbo and then you say who directed and you say mm, I think George Cukor directed you know, and then you think of that Cukor but you know you remember whether it's Jean Harlow, or who the star was, and John Wayne, Henry Fonda for John Ford or, you know, Katherine Hepburn, for George Stevens or George Cukor, and they had a great natural resource of talent in Hollywood. And a lot of them were under contract to MGM. And we feel in a funny way what we have in New York is a studio and we have the best players in the world available to our studio because we're the only studio that uses teenagers. We'll adjust our schedule a bit; if they don't show up well that's no great thing; we'll just do it another day or find somebody else. And so we had the luxury of being able to afford beautiful young people who are fascinating to be able to work with and we didn't have to say look, you know, you're pretty interesting but you have to show for work at 8 o'clock in the morning, or 6 or 7 or 8 o'clock every day for eight or twelve weeks. And they say hell, I don't want this shit; you know, that's the way people are today and they don't want to do that. And nobody else is going to use them that much. The commercial cinema doesn't use anybody under 30. Because the biggest stars are in their 40s and 50s and 60s. And the public is used to an older type. But then again movies have lost the youthful audience. They buy records, kids, they don't really go to movies so much as they did; they say they don't. And when they do go it's some real hype thing, you know.
Hill: What do you think the audience is for your films?
Morrissey: Well we always wanted it to be young people, we always basically wanted them to be a sort of mass, large audience. A non-intellectual audience. and I was happy in Germany, Flesh became so popular and famous and all the cinemas sort of became a success too; because it was going to the cinema audience, the general audience, you know. We always intended it for that in the States but it got to little out-of-the-way theatres, never on main streets. So people either went to see it if they were looking for sex or were bored or something, one or the other. And that was limited. But I know popular films are really good and they are a popular medium and it's only been in the last ten, fifteen, twenty years that they've become intellectualised and I think all the product in the past ten, fifteen years is a bit poor – I don't know. It's hard to say, maybe they'll stand up. The film-makers I like the most are certainly some of the old ones, I guess ...
Hill: Have any of the big commercial studios made approaches to you?
Morrissey: Well one or two in a way but then ... in actual fact we went out to Hollywood for a museum show in Pasadena. We saw some big produces who had done films, and agents and some studio people but the basic fact of life is, maybe five years ago, ten years ago, Hollywood would say oh we'll give you a try and you can do a film; there's no Hollywood, there's no studios. Columbia Pictures make a few films and they're solvent and every other company is bankrupt and about to close. And Paramount Pictures will make one film next year, the Godfather, and maybe release another one they made a few months ago. Warner Bros. will make one or two films, like Woodstock and Performance ... And then MGM is bankrupt, they're out of business ... And Universal Pictures which is solvent really only wants Airport – so there really isn't Hollywood, it doesn't exist any more. So it's dead. We set Hollywood up as a great model to us. And now it's just all independent producers. The problem with being independent producers, there's no continuity involved, there can be no tradition, there can be no audience response that returns. The whole notion that the audience only go if it's a good film is stupid, I think, because it means that the audience then feels it has an obligation to go because it's a good film; instead of an audience that goes just because they want to see a film. They watch television; see a dude television programme; they maybe watch those because they have to, they like television; but now it's an obligation – if it's a good film the audience will go. You know I think it's obviously the end of the film business; but I do not think independent production and emphasis on directors and all that is helping to quicken the whole thing. It happened so much quicker in America because they have so much television and Europe has no television whatsoever. I mean the television here is just absolutely nothing. American kids can't believe that people go and watch, turn on television, and there's no television – there's people talking about the man on the Moon and then about gardening. In England at least they have a little television; they have three stations. They're not on very much. And the choice is very narrow. And the comedy programmes – you know the frivolous programmes which are on – in the United States run all day long and they're really the good things and here the comedy is all aimed at sort of elderly people, like Harry Secombe and people like that. It really doesn't exist, so I don't know about England, whether it's a big film-going nation. I don't think it ever was, but in Germany and France they still go to the movies because the television is non-existent. It's like visiting a classroom to watch television in those countries. It's pathetic, it's stupid, because all that does is preserve the status quo of a nation's character, which is what they're mostly interested in doing anyway, while America has got to all these things, to raising their children on television to make the people completely different to the Europeans. There's an enormous chasm, I think, between American kids and European. I mean it's not terribly good. Kids in America are self-destructive, they're crazy, they're completely immoral, yet they're a little more interesting.
Hill: Apart from the police raid on Flesh, there's probably been less attention paid here to the films themselves than anywhere else. Do you have any idea why?
Morrissey: Well maybe it's because our films come on to the public as art films. They think Andy's an artist and this is some sort of special cause of an artist being deprived of an audience - but we are always decrying art and hoping there'd be more of a public response.
Hill: But if this was considered art we'd be able to get the critics to give reviews; we can't even get that.
Morrissey: There were good reviews of Flesh.
Hill? Flesh? Yes. Not of Andy's though.
Morrissey: No. They dismiss them as being frivolous and this is, I think, silly because as years go by the more frivolous will stand up better because the serious aspects of Flesh which people feel are sort of melancholy, whatever, you know there's no saying that in twenty, thirty years they might seem foolish. And real comedy and silly comedy survives much better and Lonesome Cowboys . . . but then Andy has some very serious films which were never shown that much. The audience wants to see sex – that shouldn't be denied them because if there's large numbers of people want to do something there's probably some good reason for it. I mean it's not right to just squelch large-scale human nature. I think Lonesome Cowboys was comedy, comparable to the Carry on movies in a way – only a very American type of comedy. This is a very indigenous type of comedy to American people, and Carry On films I don't think are terribly successful in America; one or two were years ago; now they don't come any more. But I think they're really interesting, the Carry On series, and worth watching and quite enjoyable. It's just I think they must be tired now. But they maybe don't make as many as they used to. I mean they aren't as good as they used to be. But at first they were really good. Lonesome Cowboys was, well you could call it a frolic, I don't know what else you'd call it. Camp is one word. But I never really understood the meaning of the word 'camp', and everybody has a thousand different meanings for it. And you know, I think those things are very hard to do. Certainly when Hollywood big companies try to do real send-offs or frolics or to carry silliness, it is very heavy-handed. I think to be able to do something light and get away with it is very worthwhile. The Italians do it very well. And the English certainly. Americans aren't famous for it, but they used to be in the thirties, that kind of light style. One of the things somebody pointed out about Trash, they talked about the shoe-string, cinematic dynasty of Andy Warhol's films. Something about Andy and his systematic recreation of film business. Andy's early films were influenced by Eddison – those static films, just showing what happens when you put something in front of a camera. And then from silent films to silent acting; the early talking films are really unique. Did you see the one Jimmy has called The Shopper? Now that's really a remarkable film. You know, that person in drag is just so inadequate to remember – not inadequate but couldn't you see there were lines supposed to be remembered and she could only remember the first three or four or five and then she kept being pushed back in front of the camera and trying to improvise and the whole notion of improvising is actually like something immoral to Mario. You know, not to be prepared. And so it's stumbling so badly through the whole film. And then of course there's that wonderful song where she sings 'Young in Heart' and instead of saying young in heart it's when you're a kleptomaniac and then the last line is 'when you are among the very young in heart' and she says 'when you are among the very kleptomaniac', you know she doesn't know the adjective for it and she sort of rings in 'kleptomaniac' – but yes, the shoestring cinema dynasty. Here's where it says – 'an interesting speculation that an artistic odyssey that began with a six-hour film of a man sleeping may be edging toward an entente with conventional narrative cinema.' Which is what he'd like to do. I don't know - maybe we'll do a spectacle one, a musical.
Hill: Do you think you'll ever get as far as the 70s and go into a decline like the industry?
Morrissey: Oh probably. It's probably about a year or so away. Everything's so hastened-on. Oh it is sad about the studios, but of course it would be impossible for them to exist – the audience isn't there. Costs have gone up and film-making couldn't possibly exist under any kind of union conditions. Anybody who wants to make any film and say well, we have to have a little more people than we really need because the union wants us to have them, and also the notion that people, especially young people, my God, with 16mm equipment, should have to hire somebody to do their camera work, somebody else to write the scripts for them ... I think you have to make a film now the way somebody would have made a painting or a novel in the past: they have to do it all. They edit, they put it together, they produce it, they direct it, they do everything; because it's easy to do, it's not hard. I mean my problem is that we're the only ones that do it and every time we do it we have to stop and then sell it; we have to distribute it or whatever, and we really can't go on just doing it; there's no organisation and they can just give us more assignments and just have us go and do them. I think we'd become much more proficient; certainly the proficiency is to be desired but it doesn't have to be an end in itself. And also young people can do it, and especially in colleges where they spend so much money on these stupid courses and every kind of course under the sun is given account of. They have language machines and all sorts of audio-visual equipment and everything else; equipping themselves with video tape, cassettes, and they'll probably have video-cassette courses. Film making's not this expensive and what a kid spends on a surf board he can make a film for, or certainly a used car – he could make a film for that money. But they have to want to do it. But the colleges set themselves up and say, well you know, to make film you have to get a group together and one does this and one does that and you all work together as a team – and you don't have to do that at all. I think if people think in those terms all the time nobody's going to come out of film-making schools. I mean they've been around for ten or fifteen years at least. Not one single person with any talent that I ever heard of ever went to a school. Roman Polanski went to one. But certainly in America I've never heard of anybody. I don't know. The whole notion of art and films is a little bit the problem, and that art does not belong to films, and this was Andy's notion; and if you know the person has some interesting notions about making a good film then many years later somebody can say, well that was art. If everybody puts a film out on the market it's gonna be judged as art. I feel like I'm talking as somebody who's worked for Universal International and turned out films like Airport and was trying to say that these films are OK. You know what we do really is very personal because we do it all by ourselves, but what we're not arguing for, what I'm not arguing for, is this emphasis on the personal interfering of the film-maker – the person who makes it shouldn't interfere, he should really work with people who are actors, or performers; make up stories that are simple, because you've got a mass audience, you want simple things – and not have too many preconceived notions about what they're gonna wind up with. I think that's the way to handle actors is to give them a great deal of confidence and let them think that you have faith in them. It's like sink or swim, they feel they have to do something. So they're forced to do it. And they give performances; they didn't think they were actors, they say, I've never acted before.' But I just don't like it when people say they have a script, they want to make into a film. And they just have to find the money to get it done and if they could only get the right cash – and when they finally get around to doing it they fight with their actors because the actors aren't doing it the way they wanted it done. Well obviously their opinion of their original piece of paper is terribly high and I don't think anything on paper is ever valid as something that'll work on the screen. Whatever works on the screen works on the screen because it works on the screen, not because it was worked out on a piece of paper. It works on the screen because some actor probably did something that was worth seeing.
Hill: Do you think this new kind of conception is because a lot of this feeling is coming from people who were painters?
Morrissey: No, I don't think it has anything to do with painting, being painted. I think it has to do with people who ... it's more like philosophy. Like Andy is sort of an instinctive person who does everything by instinct but is involved in philosophy very easily for someone who wants to speak about it – and people like Marshall McLuhan speak about it on large-scale terms. I don't think it has to do with being a painter. Unless the fact is that painters are encouraged to do everything by instinct – you know, a line or a colour is supposed to be pure instinct. Maybe it does. But then I don't really know of any other painters involved in films.
Hill: Michael Snow? Ed Emshwiller?
Morrissey: Yes, but I think they still regard the film as an extension of something they hang on the wall, and I don't see that those people when they make films have any people in their films. People act people. You see, I think a film should be about people, and when they're acting with patterns and abstractions and shots and montage and all the techniques of film-making, the pan and things, it has no content; and just like modern art, without any content, it's all form. It's modern art and it's not film. I think there's a big gulf there. And Andy's films are films because the subject matter is people. I don't know what it is really but I would just like to see movies emphasising more the art-form of the actor, because children love celebrity performers, but all the celebrity performers they're interested in are rock-and-roll people. Rock-and-roll people are musicians, musicians are all drug addicts because music is a kind of life-style where you go home and you play music by yourself and then you go out on a sort of circus-life existence and one-night stands; and like all these stupid people who die – Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix – they have to take drugs to survive the misery and the squalor of that kind of living. And then music itself is so non-verbal. Musicians are peculiar you know; they never were part of the community, of anything; they're always unto themselves, I think. So the kids all want these heroes and they make heroes out of these very poorly talented imitators, everybody imitating everybody else and they scream and howl, but the kids want the heroes; all the heroes are in music though. And they're really kind of Trashy heroes. It would be nice if the young people were interested more in film stars. And if you did have more rapport with the people – more films were made with young people – and the young people were the audience, the way it is for rock and roll ... But I think anything an actor does is a thousand times more interesting than anything a musician does because music is abstract and acting is very personal, more relevant. But there is this extraordinary lust for pop music, which certainly has been suffering diminishing returns lately. It's really pathetic now. It's junk. There's more good stuff on the radio than there is on albums. The albums are the real garbage. But the stuff on the popular radio which is promoted is there because of children – bubble-gum music and teeny boppers who aren't into album music. They find more good music than the rock-and-roll newspapers and the certified critics and the established groups. It's usually pretty poor. But if you're going to talk about the future of the cinema, it has to become the young people's medium because they're the only audience for anything in the world because people are so prosperous they want to sit home and watch TV; they're not interested in movies or art or anything else. And all the young people still have some interest in art, and it would be nice to really think they were going to get interested in movies. If not it's really going to be all drug addiction with repetitive Chinese-water-drop torture of mm, mm, mm mm, mm mm, which goes with the nodding out of the drugs. It would be nice if the children didn't poison their systems with drugs and kept their eyes open; watched films instead of chloroforming themselves with the shit drugs and then the shit music.
In the darkest hour, there may be light: Works from Damien Hirst's murderme collection
A range of symbols spring to mind when thinking about death: the hooded figure wielding a sickle, the faceless boatman ferrying the souls of the dead across the River Styx, the watery existence ascribed to the souls in Hades' underworld and Purgatory - the quintessential departure lounge where Christian souls gather waiting to pass into eternal bliss.
Face to Face - The Daros Collections
'Face to Face' presents the two facets, or faces, of the Daros Collections, finding similarities between works by artists from the USA and Europe and works by Latin American artists. Some of the parallels suggested by the exhibition make direct associations between one work and another. On a broader scale, when both collections are gathered together, links between them surface, providing a unique perspective on the major international art trends over a significant period of time.
Warhol: A celebration of life ... and death
From February 2007 through to September 2008 there have been over a dozen dedicated Warhol exhibitions/events/publications across the globe, from the Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam to the Samsung Museum of Art, Seoul, Korea, to Winnipeg and Memphis, USA, and to Queensland, Australia.
On Photography: A Tribute to Susan Sontag
Susan Sontag's passionate engagement with photography is the subject of a small but intriguing bit of curatorial ingenuity; a show that offers a handful of Sontag's potent statements on the medium illustrated with images that provide point and counterpoint to her ideas.
Andy Warhol Self-Portraits
Andy Warhol is best known for his iconic portraits of Marilyn Monroe, Elvis Presley and Jackie Kennedy. However, in this exhibition the focus is on the artist (or perhaps artiste) as he saw himself, or as he wanted to be seen. The works are portraits of the artist's masks and their ambiguity lies in whether they are, in fact, accurate representations of the real Andrew Warhola, or simply a means of deception - an act in pursuit of privacy.