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the column of lasting insignificance: July 7, 2012
by John Wilcock

Seeking the Drama of Everyday Life
in Burma part 2: Bagan

more video from Burma. Plus, we're putting the finishing touches on a special edition of the Ojai Orange which will be both in print and online. This editon is devoted entirely to Burma, and should be out any day now...

6/30/12

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in the press...

Wednesday,
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A Budget Travel Pioneer on a Time When $5 a Day Was Real (Frugal) Money
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by Seth Kugel
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It was the first handwritten letter Id received in 5 years. Or maybe 10. Signed by John Wilcock, a man Id never heard of, and postmarked Ojai, Calif., it was waiting for me when I returned from my So Paulo-to-New York summer trip. Mr. Wilcock wrote that he had been an assistant editor at The Times Travel section back in the 1950s, and had written the first editions of Mexico on $5 a Day, Greece on $5 a Day and Japan on $5 a Day for Arthur Frommer in the 1960s.

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Village Voice and Interview cofounder John Wilcock was first drawn into the milieu of Andy Warhol through film-maker Jonas Mekas, assisting on some of Warhols early films, hanging out at his parties and quickly becoming a regular at the Factory. About six months after I started hanging out at the old, silvery Factory onWest 47th Street, he recalls, [Gerard] Malanga came up to me and asked, When are you going to write something about us? Already fascinated by Warhols persona, Wilcock went to work, interviewing the artists closest associates, supporters and superstars. Among these were Malanga, Naomi Levine, Taylor Mead and Ultra Violet, all of whom had been in the earliest films; scriptwriter Ronnie Tavel, and photographer Gretchen Berg; art dealers Sam Green, Ivan Karp, Eleanor Ward and Leo Castelli, and the Metropolitan Museum of Arts Henry Geldzahler; the poets Charles Henri Ford and Taylor Mead, and the artist Marisol; and the musicians Lou Reed and Nico. Paul Morrisey supplied the title: The Autobiography and Sex Life of AndyWarhol was the first oral biography of the artist. First published in 1971, and pitched against the colorful backdrop of the 1960s, it assembles a prismatic portrait of one of modern arts least knowable artists during the early years of his fame. The Autobiography and Sex Life is likely the most revealing portrait of Warhol, being composite instead of singular; each of its interviewees offers a piece of the puzzle that was Andy Warhol. This new edition corrects the many errors of the first, and is beautifully designed in a bright, Warholian palette with numerous illustrations. The British-born writer John Wilcock co-founded The Village Voice in 1955, and went on to edit seminal publications such as The East Village Other, Los Angeles Free Press, Other Scenes and (in 1970) Interview, with Andy Warhol.