“I met Andy Warhol for the first time in Paris at the Hôtel de Crillon. My partner Jay Johnson, who I’m still with today, had a brother named Jed – he was dating Andy at the time,” stated Tom Cashin about his first encounter with the notorious artist. “We ended up ordering food to his room and I couldn’t believe my eyes that Andy ordered his dog a steak – it was a riot”.
Cashin, a former fashion model that was sent to Europe by his agent to get exposure, captivated Warhol’s attention and camera lens, beginning their years-long friendship…and subsequent photos. “I was an Irish step dancer and Andy had never met one before – so he found it quite funny,” he said. “Coupled with the fact that I wore a bold white suit the first time we met, there was instantly a connection. I was a skinny and tall kid from Brooklyn – Andy thought I was a total character”.
Their relationship evolved over the years, going from one of nonchalant encounters to one that was somewhat therapeutic, especially when it came to his boyfriend, Jed. “He would call me if he had an issue with. Jay was the bad boy and Jed was not. He would call me about all sorts of things that were happening in his life – and I always answered”. Cashin, along with his partner, spent countless experiences with Warhol and his gang, ‘The Factory Superstars’ – especially at his townhouse. Warhol, a New York scenester, in all his publicized encounters, somehow managed to keep his personal life somewhat private.
“He wasn't shy about bringing his partners over the years around or having all the guys over to his house in Montauk. That’s usually where he would have them do those incredible torso pictures – but he always maintained some level of privacy”.
Left: Andy Warhol (1928 – 1987), Nude Male Model, executed in 1977. Unique polaroid print. 4¼ x 3 3/8 in. (10.8 x 8.6 cm.)
Right: Andy Warhol (1928 – 1987), Torso, Drawn circa 1982. Graphite on paper. 31½ x 23¾ in. (80 x 60.3 cm.)
Andy Warhol @ Christies: Andy’s Randy Summer is a collection of Warhol’s original pictures that showcase the sensuality and sexuality of the male form, aligning with LGBTQ Pride Month, some of which feature Cashin. “I can't remember how many times he photographed me to be honest,” he said. “I don't remember him taking a lot of the pictures but Andy always had his camera and did his thing – whether I was aware of it or not”. What Andy liked most was the act of ‘looking’ – something that Cashin says inspired some of his greatest works. “He was a real voyeur in terms of watching 'the young kids' misbehave, carry on, take drugs, dance at Studio 54 or wherever people were going,” he said. “What Andy thrived on was being at the part and taking it all in,” he said. “I have no doubt he would be as inspired today as he was back then”.
To view and bid on more works visit the Andy Warhol @ Christie’s: Andy’s Randy Summer online auction is live through June 25, 2015.
Main image at top: Andy Warhol (1928 – 1987), Andy Warhol and Tom Cashin, executed circa 1980. Unique gelatin silver print. 8 x 10 in. (20.3 x 25.4 cm.)
© 2015 The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc.