Swimming Underground: My Years in the Warhol Factory

Swimming Underground - Mary Woronov If I had any romantic ideas of what life in the Warhol Factory was like in the mid 60s, they are gone now. Mary Woronov paints a dismal picture of no-talented drag queens, drug addicts and losers who gravitated toward a talented artist who was just as talented in the art of using people. For that matter, she does not portray herself very well either, Woronov comes across as a violent speed addict who hated men and people in general unless they were further down in the gutter than she was. What makes this book interesting is that the author is a survivor outlasting most of the Warhol coterie and, if you've seen any of her post-Warhol work, turned into an actress of more talent than those who bit the dust before her. What I missed in this often depressing book is learning how she managed to regain her life after years of abuse. Instead we get the tunnel without seeing the light at the end. Woronov does show an amazing ability to place emotions in print and I give her credit for not idealizing herself or her factory colleagues. Yet this book was just too depressing for me and gave me little insight on what made the Warhol scene in the 60s so magnetic to some and so influential to others.