Alfred Leslie - Cool Man In A Golden Age

Alfred Leslie - Cool Man In A Golden Age

Synopsis

Alfred Leslie is a pivotal American artist-painter-filmmaker whose work spans the past fifty years. A celebrated contemporary of the Abstract Expressionists and a key figure in the extraordinary social milieu of downtown New York from the 1950s and 60s to the present, his own canvases were amongst the most revered of his peers. In 1959 he made Pull My Daisy with the photographer Robert Frank and in 1964 collaborated with the inimitable poet Frank O'Hara on The Last Clean Shirt. In 1960 he edited and published the amazing collection of texts and drawings that form the one shot review The Hasty Papers – in and of itself a summation of cultural activity with contributions from Allen Ginsberg, John Ashbery and Fidel Castro amongst many others. Leslie dramatically moved away from abstraction to make giant almost hyper-real portraits, the majority of which were destroyed in the now infamous fire that ripped through his studio and its neighbouring blocks on October 17 1966. This utterly devastating event, that completely destroyed paintings, films and manuscripts, continues to inform his work today.
 
Cool Man in a Golden Age presents a selection of his key films alongside a new video 'self-interview' and a rare television documentary from 1966 featuring Frank O'Hara and Alfred Leslie as well as a new essay by Ian White.

Film Listing

- Pull My Daisy (1959, 29 min)
- The Last Clean Shirt (1964, 42 min)
- Birth Of A Nation (1965-98, 40 min)
- A Stranger Calls At Midnight, A Self-Interview Of Sorts (2008, 32 min)
- USA Poetry: Frank O'Hara, Richard O. Moore (1966, 15 min)