Gerard Malanga  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Gerard Joseph Malanga (born March 20, 1943) is a North American poet, photographer, filmmaker, curator and archivist.



Born in the Bronx, New York, he graduated from the School of Industrial Art in Manhattan and attended Wagner College on Staten Island. At Wagner, he befriended one of his English professors, Willard Maas and his wife, Marie Menken -- both experimental filmmakers and socialites who were the basis for Edward Albee's play, "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" In 1981 Gerard Malanga photographed the last farmer on Staten Island, Herbert Gericke. Malanga was a major influence on Andy Warhol, with whom he founded Interview magazine, which still flourishes under different management. Malanga was Warhol's chief assistant from 1963 to 1970, as well as the lead actor in many of his early films. His photographs of poets have been published in The New Yorker, Poetry, and Unmuzzled OX.

Gerard Malanga is perhaps best known as Andy Warhol’s right-hand-man during the artist’s most prolific and infulential period as a filmmaker and painter, during which he created a series of deeply romantic films of his own, in which Malanga’s on-screen persona of "the young poet" is foregrounded in each frame. Malanga’s films, shot almost entirely with a hand-held Bolex, present a world in which all is celebration, beauty, and sacrifice of the self for art. The 30 minute color and black and white film In Search of the Miraculous (1967) is an emotional, vivid poem of adoration for his then-fiancée, Bennedetta Barzini.

Other early Malanga films also put the performer center stage within the filmmaker's lens, which once again extends rather than contains the performances it records. Mary for Mary (1966) is a portrait of the actor Mary Woronov, wielding her whip with customary aplomb as she confronts Malanga’s camera; Donovan Meets Gerard (1966) documents a performative meeting between Malanga and the folk singer Donovan at Warhol’s studio. One of Malanga’s most ambitious works, the 60 minute, split screen, two-projector, stereo sound Pre-Raphaelite Dream (1968), documents the filmmaker’s friends and extended family in Cambridge, Massachusetts, as they perform their lives for the camera. In The Recording Zone Operator (1968), shot on location in Rome in 35mm Techniscope/Technicolor, Malanga worked with Tony Kinna, Anita Pallenberg and members of the Living Theatre.

In 1970, Malanga left Warhol's studio to work on his own.

Currently, Malanga maintains an archive of his still and motion picture records of life at Warhol's Factory, and continues his work as a poet. He is the author of some twenty volumes of poetry, including the collection This Will Kill That, and a collaboration with Warhol which has become a much sought-after collector's item, Screen Tests: A Diary, which contains some of his most compelling early poems.

Selected works


  • Screen Tests: A Diary (with photos by Andy Warhol) (1966)
  • 3 Poems for Benedetta Barzini (1967)
  • Prelude to Internatonal Velvet Debutante (1967)
  • The Last Benedetta Poems (1969)
  • Gerard Malanga Selbsportrait eines Dichters (1970)
  • 10 Poems for 10 Poets (1970)
  • chic death (1971)
  • Wheels Of Light (1972)
  • The Poetry Of Night, Dawn And Dream/Nine Poems For Cesar Vallejo (1972)
  • Licht/Light (1973, bilingual)
  • Incarnations: Poems 1965-1971 (1974)
  • Rosebud (1975)
  • Leaping Over Gravestones (1976)
  • Ten Years After: The Selected Benedetta Poems (1977)
  • 100 years have passed (1978)
  • This Will Kill That (1978)
  • Three Diamonds (1991)
  • Mythologies Of The Heart (1996)
  • No Respect: New & Selected Poems 1964 - 2000 (2001)


  • Screen Tests/A Diary, in collaboriation with Andy Warhol (1967)
  • Six Portraits (1975)
  • Good Girls (1994)
  • Seizing The Moment (1997)
  • Resistance to Memory (1998)
  • Screen Tests Portraits Nudes 1964 - 1996 (2000)

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Gerard Malanga" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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