The downtown art scene in New York in the 70s and 80s brings up a few recurring faces and names. No doubt you're familiar with a handful of artists making names for themselves around that time. Basquiat. Haring. Wojnarowicz. But of course, others were around too. Others who you might not have heard of. Director Brian Vincent is about to unearth one of those artists' legacies in his documentary Make Me Famous. And that artist's name is Edward Brezinski. This is the story of a painter who came up with all the big names but never saw his own up in lights. Or is he still yet to?
We've had our fair share of 80s New York content as of late, with Nan Goldin's documentary, All the Beauty and the Bloodshed and I must say, it just leaves me craving more. Make Me Famous will show some of the art legends honing their craft and letting loose at Club 57. We'll also see the work and art of Edward Brezinski and his Magic Gallery which he ran from his apartment in the East Village. Debauchery ensues.
The trailer gives you all the grungy and glamorous photos of the period and quotes from greats who were there. It also poses a fascinating question. What if Edward Brezinski is actually still alive? Prices of art by the likes of Basquiat and Keith Herring rose astronomically after their deaths, leaving other artists to wonder, "what if." In the trailer, we hear people pondering the question "was Edward Brezinski capable of faking his own death?" This sets a new tone for the documentary, ushering it into a new genre entirely, filled with unanswered questions and mystique. So, that begs the question, did he become universally recognised posthumously? Not so far, but his work is showing in the MoMA and there's this documentary out, so maybe it's not such a far cry.
Make Me Famous premiered in London on the 17 February at the Bertha Dochouse and will be showing until 1 March. Preview the trailer for the film below.
Image source: IMDb