Nostalgia is a funny thing. It’s supposed to be a longing for the past when things are remembered as better for you but sometimes it can be weirder than that. First of all over this summer (2022) I found myself being nostalgic for last summer (2021). It’s a little too soon for barely a year old nostalgia. Plus the reason for the nostalgia was painting. I got five large paintings done over the summer of 2021 and that was the first time I painted that much in years. During the summer of 2022 I got lots of art done but no large paintings. Somehow that made me feel nostalgic for the days when I got paintings done. Weird.

The other strange thing I’m feeling nostalgic for is from a time before I was born. I wasn’t even alive so how can I feel nostalgic for that time? It started when I joined a Facebook group about Andy Warhol. I must have joined it a year ago. I’ve never been a huge fan of Warhol’s work but I enjoyed the group because of the photos of Andy. He seemed to always be having a good time.

Andy Warhol was very much into being a famous artist and it shows in the photos in this group. He goes to all sorts of parties and meets all sorts of famous people. He makes being a famous artist seem like a lot of fun and I appreciate that. I can’t think of any other artist, even ones who’s art I like better than Warhol’s, who looks like they’re having as much fun as Andy.

As time went by and I was paying attention to the Warhol Facebook group one member joined who liked to post photos and stuff about a Warhol “It Girl” from the early 1960s named Edie Sedgwick. She died in 1971 at the age of 28. This member really liked Sedgwick and posted a lot of stuff so that made me aware of a book called “Edie: American Girl” by Jean Stein and George Plimpton. I took the book out on Hoopla, the library app, and gave it a read.

The book was done in a format that was unusual. It was a series of interviews with people about the life and times of Edie. There were a few paragraphs from one person and then another and another. As time periods would change people would come and go. It was an interesting format full of personal stories. The first half of the book was about the Sedgwicks and their family background and the second half was about Edie’s adult life.

Edie’s adult life in the early 1960s had a lot to do with Andy Warhol and it was wild. I had never read about this particular period of time in the art world before. What I knew about Pop Art I learned in my art history classes in the 1980s and it never was my favorite time period. Now it might be.

The early 1960s in the New York City art scene with Andy Warhol was all about parties, staying up late, being seen, making weird movies, taking drugs (lots of speed to stay up all night and get stuff done), sex, plus some rock and roll. Not a lifestyle I’ve ever lead but the people in the book sure seemed to be having fun. Except maybe the ones who died young. There were a lot of those.

After the Edie Sedgwick book I found one written by Andy Warhol himself. It is called “Popism” and if memory serves it was written in about 1980 and it was about his time in the 1960s. I found the writing style to be a little detached and there was a lot of name dropping in it but I liked the book nonetheless. It was a fun look back in time from a person who was there and he was not so far removed from the time he was writing about.

As I now think about the writing and my describing it as “Detached” that may be because I had more nostalgia for the time period than Warhol did. That’s a strange idea to contemplate.

The next thing to trigger my sense of nostalgia was a comic book. I’m in a Facebook group called “The Silver Age of Comic Books” and the Silver Age encompasses the 1960s. Someone posted a Marvel comic book from 1967. It was “Millie the Model Annual #7” drawn by Stan Goldberg.

What made this comic stand out to me was that it was referencing the Pop Art of the time. Millie was in a poster shop which had psychedelic posters of popular actors, musicians, and artists. There is also a cool visual pun going on with Millie blending into the art. She is Pop Art herself! The person who posted this cover on Facebook also posted where the references came from. That was very cool too.

Besides making me nostalgic for the Pop Art days of the 1960s the Millie the Model cover was also a very good comic book cover. It is well designed, well drawn, and well colored. As a huge fan of comic book covers this is a good example of the art form. I knew I wanted to get a copy of the comic for myself and also so I could scan it in, blow it up, and make a large print of the cover. I like to do such things on occasion.

I got onto eBay, looked around for a copy, and eventually spent $26 on a decent one. Since I was going to scan it I wanted a copy that wouldn’t bee too much work to clean up. The prices on the issue varied from $10 up to $200. The expensive ones were in no way worth it to me so I settled on the $26 one. A week later it came in the mail.

The copy I got looks good and I spent a few hours cleaning up the scan I made of it before I printed it out. I’m still not done with it because I had to pause to get more printer paper but it’s 90% there. It makes me wish I was there too. Ahhh… Nostalgia!

Those are the two weird nostalgia urges I’ve been feeling lately. I’m feeling wistful for just a year ago when I got a bunch of paintings done plus I’m feeling like it sure would be fun to visit a time before I was born. I’ve got no interest in speed but it sure would be cool to be a young famous NYC artist in 1963.