“Andy Warhol: My Hustler & Beauty # 2: (Boston): ‘Film Maker’s Cinematheque (a.k.a. Boston Tea Party) 53 Berkeley Street, February 21, 22, 23 (1967) 7:30 and 9:30 $1.50.” Offset lithograph printed in blue on pink paper. Vintage handbill / flyer. Excellent condition. Before transitioning into a rock-only venue of now legendary proportions, 53 Berkeley Street, Boston housed The Film Maker’s Cinematheque, which began as a showcase for underground films. The first musical concert at the site was held on January 20, 1967--just two weeks before Warhol screened films starring Paul America (My Hustler) and Edie Sedgewick (Beauty # 2). Among many other legendary rock performers, The Velvet Underground (who are named on their separate May, 1967 Boston Tea party flyer as “Andy Warhol’s Velvet Underground”) famously performed many times here, with Lou Reed declaring on stage in 1968: “This is our favorite place to play in the whole country.” A contemporary MIT student newspaper describes the venue--a unique intersection of avant-garde film and music--around February, 1967 as follows: “Also started last month and continuing at 53 Berkeley in Boston is the local branch of Film Maker's Cinematheque and the Boston Tea Party with experimental lighting and electronics by an MIT graduate. With the establishment of the Cinematheque, Boston has become one of the best cities in the country for experimental film and the small colony of Underground film-makers is growing rapidly.” In other words, the Boston Tea Party / Film Maker’s Cinematheque was a well-staffed and well-equipped venue for the Exploding Plastic Inevitable’s spectacular light show and film projections to follow. In a recently preserved film, Warhol captured the Velvets (and the EPI) at the Boston Tea Party later in May, 1967. Although Warhol did not design this flyer, it is a rare, ephemeral, pink-and-blue document from a receptive and favorite venue. Excellent provenance.
© Todd Alden 2012 Enquire