Words Johanna Bras’
Lived fast and died young. Edie Sedgwick inspired thousands. She started fashion trends unintentionally. With her face hidden by a mask of makeup she was a truly intriguing and fascinating character.
The socialite first mesmerized me after watching Factory Girl (a movie tracking the dreadfully glamorous life of Edie Sedgwick), if you have never seen it, I would seriously suggest giving it a watch! The references to Velvet Underground and Bob Dylan and the interpretation of Andy Warhol, are extremely fascinating.
Edie Sedgwick (played by Sienna Miller) definitely captivates anyone and everyone she meets. Her cropped blonde hair, pale face, dark eyes and drawn on beauty spot was her signature look, which later became iconic sixties makeup.
Her fancy dress fashion is what struck me most, wearing leotards, tights accessorized with big heels and the longest earrings she could find. Looking around through the streets of today you can still see influences from the sixties with Vintage Bohemians walking through Soho dreaming of Studio 54.
Edie Sedgwick was an artist come actress. It was in the early 1960’s when she was introduced to avant-garde artist, Andy Warhol. She soon became his muse at the factory. He was captured by her rare, beauty and created abstract movies, featuring Sedgwick, one of them titled “The poor little rich girl”. She became an international obsession, the movies were a hit and she was named girl of the year in 1965 continuously creating chaos and uproar wherever she went.Looking at real footage of Edie, it was easy to see how beautiful and striking she was, with a warm and unique persona, giggling and smiling away at the camera.
When Edie was the sixties “It girl”, she formed a very close relationship with legendary folk singer, Bob Dylan; there are rumors the song “Just like a woman” was influenced by Sedgwick’s life. Despite Dylan’s intentions, he was unable to save her from the fame and glamorous lifestyle, which eventually ruined her. When Warhol first laid eyes on her, he said, “He had never seen someone with so many problems.” Many people blame him for what became of Sedgwick, they say he manipulated her vulnerability in order to produce his art.
In the late sixties Edie’s relationship with Warhol started to deteriorate, he found a new muse, Nico (Velvet Underground’s front woman). She too is an interesting character, although she was opposite to the playful and delicate Edie, her androgynous style and warrior exterior is what made her intriguing to watch. Sedgwick’s drug addiction continued to grow, which finally lead her to her death in 1971. She was a beautiful disaster who coloured the world with crayola skies.
We will never see her grow old; people remember a beautiful and youthful character. In the words of Debbie Harry “Die Young, Stay Pretty.” This is the story of Edie. It has been 40 years since Her death, only alive for 28 short but vibrant Years. She leaves an imprint on art and fashion, longer then many people will live. That is brilliant in it self don’t you think?