‘The Lost Archive of Andy Warhol’ by William John Kennedy

The Lost Archive of Andy Warhol
Andy Warhol Filming “Taylor Mead’s Ass copyright William John Kennedy / Courtesy of Woodbury House
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The Lost Archive of Andy Warhol’ by William John Kennedy
February 29, 2024 – March 21st, 2024
Woodbury House
29 Sackville Street
Mayfair, W1S 3DX

The Lost Archive of Andy Warhol’ is at Woodbury House from February 29th to March 21st, 2024. This extraordinary showcase features a rediscovered collection of signed photographs taken by William John Kennedy in the early 1960s, capturing the essence of the art icon Andy Warhol. The exhibition consists of thirty of these photographs, some never seen before plus a Museum Edition Set.

The Lost Archive of Andy Warhol’ by William John Kennedy
Andy Warhol in a Field of Black-Eyed Susans Holding an Early “Flowers”
Canvas with Taylor Mead in New York
Copyright William John Kennedy / Courtesy of Woodbury House 

This Limited-Edition portfolio, signed in the colophon by William John Kennedy, is comprised of four hand-printed gelatin silver photographs and one chromogenic print. It is assembled in a custom designed hand-made archival aluminium box, accompanied by 6 smaller archival aluminium boxes that include a Foreword, Introduction, and 5 Essays. The portfolio is 22″ x 28″ in size and exclusively created for The Andy Warhol Museum, and is limited to an edition of 50 with 5 artist proofs.

Joseph Bannan, Partner, and Curator of Woodbury House explains: “We are thrilled to present ‘The Lost Archive of Andy Warhol,’ featuring the remarkable photography of William John Kennedy. Kennedy’s work offers a rare glimpse into the inner world of one of the most iconic artists of our time, captured by a pioneer who was ahead of his time.”

The Lost Archive of Andy Warhol’ by William John Kennedy
Warhol Holding Marilyn Acetate I
Copyright William John Kennedy / Courtesy of Woodbury House 

Kennedy’s journey since his rediscovery has been marked by remarkable achievements and recognition, including collaborations with the Andy Warhol Museum. His photographs now adorn esteemed collections of major institutions worldwide, underscoring the significance of his work in preserving and showcasing the legacy of Andy Warhol. 

“As you navigate this exhibition, I invite you to contemplate the profound impact of William John Kennedy’s work and the enduring legacy of Andy Warhol,” said Bannan. “Each photograph serves as a poignant reminder of art’s ability to transcend time and space, inviting us to reconsider our understanding of the past and envision the possibilities of the future.”

As you stand before these captivating images, it is essential to acknowledge their extraordinary journey to this point. Forgotten for years, their re-emergence was sparked by a serendipitous encounter—a misattributed photograph in a seminal book on Andy Warhol.
This chance occurrence reignited Kennedy’s memory and set in motion a remarkable journey of rediscovery.

In 2006, the release of a large-format book on Andy Warhol, considered a definitive guide to his life and work, unveiled a photograph captured by William John Kennedy, erroneously credited to another photographer. This revelation ignited a spark within Kennedy, propelling him to revisit a forgotten chapter of his own artistic legacy. For over four decades, these images lay dormant, concealed within a box, awaiting rediscovery.

“Perhaps the most striking feature of William John Kennedy’s photographs of Warhol is the manner in which they seek to elide the artist and his work.” Nicholas Chambers, The Andy Warhol Museum, Milton Fine Curator of Art 

The Lost Archive of Andy Warhol’ by William John Kennedy
Andy Warhol On The Pay Phone At The Factory
Copyright William John Kennedy / Courtesy of Woodbury House 

In 2008, William John Kennedy embarked on a quest to unearth these long-forgotten treasures, delving into his archives to retrieve what would become a collection of unparalleled historical significance. This collection not only celebrates Warhol but also pays homage to the introduction to Warhol, by Robert Indiana, with an image specifically curated within this exhibition of the two of them together, taken at the ‘Museum of Modern Art’ during an exhibition featuring Indiana’s work back in 1963. 

Woodbury House invites art lovers, historians, and the curious minded alike to join us for this special exhibition, promising a journey through time and artistry. 

The Lost Archive of Andy Warhol’ by William John Kennedy opens on February 29, 2024 until March 21st, 2024 at Woodbury House

©2024 Woodbury House

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