Andy Warhol, Govinda Gallery, and the Whitney Museum

by Chris Murray on December 4, 2018

Chris Murray and Andy Warhol in the back room of Govinda Gallery, November 6, 1985. Photo by Lucian Perkins

Andy Warhol was the cornerstone of Govinda Gallery. Even before his first exhibition at Govinda, Endangered Species (1984), Andy had a crucial influence on my opening Govinda Gallery and on our exhibition programming. Through the acquaintance of three of my best friends: Bob Colacello and Michael Netter from Georgetown University, and Chris Makos, who I met in New York City in 1974, I came to know Andy quite well. I organized several exhibitions of Warhol’s work at Govinda Gallery and went with him to dinners, exhibition openings, parties, Interview magazine promotions, Studio 54, along with chauffeuring him on visits to Washington, acting as ‘body guard’ on a number of occasions, and numerous visits to Andy’s studio and the offices of Interview. This is the first in a series of blogs about Warhol and Govinda to coincide with his sensational exhibition, “Andy Warhol – From A to B and Back Again”.

Just two weeks ago, I had the pleasure of attending an evening talk at the Whitney Museum given by Bob Colacello, Vincent Fremont, and Michael Netter, which was followed by a private viewing of the Warhol exhibition. Colacello, Fremont, and Netter were each on one of the three floors of galleries and were available to talk about Andy and his art.

Michael Netter, Vincent Fremont, and Bob Colacello at the Whitney Museum. Photo Govinda Gallery Archive.

Michael Netter showing one of several hundred videos he made of Warhol and his circle to Merrill Lynch executive, Peter Murray. Photo Govinda Gallery Archive.

Bob Colacello talking to guests about Warhol’s portrait painting. Photo Govinda Gallery Archive.

Andy Warhol’s portrait of his mother. Photo Govinda Gallery Archive.

                                    Chris Murray with Warhol’s painting of Elizabeth Taylor.                                                                              Photo Govinda Gallery Archive.

As a measure of Warhol’s impact on Govinda Gallery and our exhibition programming, here is a list of photographer’s and artists who have exhibited works on Warhol at Govinda, or were influenced in large part by Warhol: Allan Tannenbaum, Mark Seliger, Michael Cooper, Carlotta Hester, Kate Simon, Mick Rock, Greg Gorman, Harry Benson, Sueraya Shaheen, Christopher Makos, Bob Gruen, Peter Wise, Firooz Zahedi, Douglas Kirkland, Annie Leibovitz, Bob Colacello, Mark Kostabi, Matthew Rolston, Peter Strongwater, Byron Peck, Erica Lennard, Howard Carr, Mati Klarwein, and Michael Halsband.

Category: Blog, The Back Room   

3 responses to “Andy Warhol, Govinda Gallery, and the Whitney Museum”

  1. Mary Catherine Beyda says:

    Chris: I didn’t know any of this. I look forward to the next installment.
    Love to you and Carlotta, Mary Catherine

  2. Vincent Fremont says:

    Hello Chris,

    It was wonderful to see you at our Whitney panel discussion. Thank you for mentioning the talk in your piece. Please make a note that my last name is spelled FREMONT with only one “e”.

    All my best,


  3. Christine Nassikas says:

    What an amazing friendship to share. You are part
    of history

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