Andy Warhol's Montauk estate played host to dozens of cultural elites. His photographs of these summer escapades explode the astutely manicured facade he himself created, giving shape to a pared-down, newly intimate glimpse of some of the most monumental icons of the time.
Montauk's stark moors had been a far cry from the silver-emblazoned walls of Andy Warhol’s Factory and the opulent Manhattan clubs and restaurants he and his celebrity and artist friends frequented. And yet, this was precisely the appeal of the rough-hewn country estate Warhol co-purchased with his manager and collaborator, Paul Morrissey, in 1971.
Known as Eothen, the 20-acre property played host to a coterie of influential figures, from artists and intellectuals, models, actors, and rock stars to political families and aristocratic scions. Among a certain set in the 1970s and 80s, Montauk provided an escape from the workaday prestige and profligacy of life on the upper crust. Mick and Bianca Jagger were inclined to pass through, as were Jerry Hall, Liza Minnelli, John Lennon and Yoko Ono, Elizabeth Taylor, fashion designer Halston, and Jackie Onassis, her children, John Jr. and Caroline, and her sister, Lee Radziwill.
“This you can’t capture in a photograph, no matter how many times you photograph it,” Paul Morrissey said of Eothen's inscrutable allure. And yet, this could not have prevented Warhol — who, aside from being known to carry a camera everywhere he went, was attracted to all things elusive — from trying.