1967. Archive of eight vintage borderless photographs, three typescript essays, and a carbon typescript of the first essay and first page of the second, by photographer Jerry Bauer, circa 1967, with the photographs corresponding to the topics of the essays.
Bauer was an American photographer best known for his photographic portraits of writers, with his portraits of Samuel Beckett being held in particularly high regard. Much of his work resides in the collection of the National Portrait Gallery in London.
The first essay, “The American Underground: Mind Expansion, A Messiah, ‘Love’,” is an examination of Timothy Leary and the "League for Spiritual Discovery" (LSD), a communal organization carrying out studies in the religious use of psychedelic drugs, as well as the effects of LSD. Two photographs are of the New York Millbrook estate, mentioned in the essay, one of the centers for the group, one photograph of the estate itself, and the other of two participants on the porch. Another photograph shows three young people lounging on a bed, a young man with beads in his hand, matching the description in the essay of a subject's focus on “a set of beads,” and a description of the living quarters being “. . . simple: mattresses on the floor.”
The second essay, “American Underground : Mind Expansion, The Poets, ‘Love’ (2),” is broken into three sections. The first is about the musical group The Fugs, who Bauer describes as “the Beatles of the American underground.” Two of the photographs, in and around Washington Square Park feature members of The Fugs, one of a gleaming Ed Sanders and Geoff Outlaw with two unidentified young women. In a second photograph, the same group is on the grass along with Ken Weaver and a third unidentified young woman.
The second section of the essay is about “the two stars” of the underground film movement, Andy Warhol stars Baby Jane Holzer and Edie Sedgewick, with a corresponding photograph taken in Warhol’s Factory, showing Ingrid Superstar sitting on a mattress, Baby Jane Holzer on the floor with her back to the camera, along with several unidentified subjects. Holzer is identified from a published photograph by Bauer, titled “Baby Jane Holzer” taken at the same time as the one in the archive.
The final section of the essay is a about American youth and drug culture in Greenwich Village as well as the neighborhood itself. Here the related photographs are of several young people seated on the grass, one playing the guitar, in Washington Square Park and one of several people standing around a Greenwich Village intersection.
The third essay, “Andy Warhol: Film Director of America’s Underground,” is a study of Warhol’s early experimental films. Beginning with a brief summation of Warhol’s early career, Bauer goes on to postulate about Warhol’s films, discussing the director’s various regulars, including Elekro, Baby Jane Holzer, Sally Kirkland, Nico (here spelled “Nicot”), and others.
Photographs: Six photographs 10.75 x 8.25 inches, two photographs 10.75 x 8 inches. Near Fine overall.
Ribbon typescript essays: 8.25 x 10.75 inches. Typescript on onionskin stock, six leaves, bound with a silver corner clip. Near Fine.
Carbon typescript essays: 8.25 x 10.75 inches. Carbon typescript on onionskin stock, three leaves, bound with a silver corner clip. Near Fine.