- Author: Gordon Ball
- Introduction:Jonas Mekas
- Publisher: Coffee House Press
- Published: April 1999
- ISBN-10: 1566890829
- ISBN-13: 9781566890823
- Format: Paperback
- Size: 5.75 X 8.5 X 0.75
- Weight: 0.85 lbs.
- Copyright: 1999
- Subject: BIOGRAPHY & AUTOBIOGRAPHY / Entertainment & Performing Arts
Our Price: $15.95
Independent filmaker chronicles his encounters with Allen Ginsburg, Timothy Leary, Andy Warhol, and others.
Sex and drugs and rock 'n' roll and avant-garde film can t save this author s recollections of his first year in New York City from the gaping maw of narcissistic tedium. The year was 1966. Newly graduated from a conservative southern college, Ball, now an independent filmmaker and professor (English/Virginia Military Institute), went north to the big city to make his way in the world, ideally doing something connected with film. It was the dawn of the golden age of experimental movies. Innovators such as Stan Brakhage and Kenneth Anger were attracting serious critical attention, and it seemed as if a new and important art form was being born. Ball quickly found employment as a factotum with the grandfather of avant-garde filmmaking, Jonas Mekas. When not typing and filing, Ball made a quickie eight-mm film or two, which he exhibited at a number of festivals. He also met, mostly via Mekas, all the usual suspects in the burgeoning counterculture, from Allen Ginsberg to Timothy Leary to, of course, Andy Warhol. Few of these meetings were particularly notable, but Ball was young and full of vim and vigor, and passing encounters with minor celebs were just icing on the groovy cake. There were mind-blowing new drugs like LSD to experiment with and polymorphous sex aplenty, and new tracks from the Beatles and the Stones to dig while you were having that sex or sounding the depths of hallucinogens. In fact, this is not so much a memoir as a cultural artifact. From bellbottoms to antiwar protests, there is hardly a '60s cliché missing. But by 1967, Ball was ready to move on from New York and head down to Mexico with his girlfriend. While Ball s writing is merely workmanlike, there is a certain historical curiosity value to this account but precious little beyond that. Copyright 1999 Kirkus Reviews
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