Follow in Andy Warhol’s Footsteps

Follow in Andy Warhol’s Footsteps

July 11, 2011 at 6:00 am

Upon his first visit to New York City, Thomas Kiedrowski’s friends asked him what he wanted to do. Instead of rambling off a list of tired tourist traps, Kiedrowski pulled out a list of addresses detailing all things Andy Warhol.

Out of that list grew “Andy Warhol’s New York City: Four Walks, Uptown to Downtown,” Kiedrowski’s detailed walking tours of important sites Warhol’s life and work in Manhattan.

The book features 12 original drawings made by Warhol’s former studio assistant Vito Giallo. It also features a system of stars to let readers know the degree to which featured locations still exist as they were in Warhol’s day.

One of the book’s more intriguing walks takes the reader through Murray Hill, then weaves across the island to Chelsea and meanders down to Greenwich Village. With 25 locations ranging from hotels to factories, the tour boasts a diversity of scenery and history. Below are several highlights from the downtown leg of that walking tour.

See a map of the tour here.


3rd Factory aka The Office, 860 Broadway

It was in this Union Square building that Andy Warhol Enterprises flourished. Famous works created here include “Time Capsules,” “Skull Paintings,” “Dollar” and “Oxidation Paintings.” Films and video installations were also shot at this location, making it one of Warhol’s more prolific outpost.

Max’s Kansas City, 213 Park Ave. South

Outside Max’s Kansas City. Flickr/Nesster

A nondescript New York deli today, the previous life of 213 Park Ave. South as an exclusive nightclub and restaurant was both glory-filled and star-studded. Warhol and his Factory friends would occupy the tables in the back of the restaurant like the cool kids in a high school cafeteria. Warhol would often open a tab to feed his entourage and then offer to pay with paintings he created.



New Bowery Theater, 4 St. Mark’s Pl.

Trash and Vaudeville, formerly The New Bowery Theater. Flickr/Vincent Desjardins

The New Bowery Theater, which started its life as a townhouse in the 1830s, became a venue that featured many controversial films during the 1960s. Warhol premiered his film “Tarzan and Jane Regained…Sort of” at New Bowery in 1974. The location was closed and reopened several times until its eventual reincarnation as Trash and Vaudeville, the legendary punk and counter-culture clothing store that dressed stars like the Ramones and Debbie Harry in the early ’80s.


Caffé Reggio. Flickr/Ion Markel

Caffé Reggio, 119 MacDougal St.

Located in the heart of Greenwich Village, Caffé Reggio is a quaint coffee house whose dubious claim to fame is that its original owner, Domenico Parisi, was the first person to introduce the cappuccino to America. The café, which opened in 1927, was a popular locale for artists, musicians and poets throughout the ages. Warhol visited the café with his friend Robert Heide while recovering after Valerie Solanes shot him in the fall of 1968. The café is also a star in its own right, having been featured in movies like “Godfather II,” “The Kremlin Letter” and “Shaft.”

La MaMa E.T.C., 74A E. 4th St.

A sign outside La MaMa E.T.C. Flickr/Irumiha

La MaMa Experimental Theatre Club moved from the Lower East Side to its East Village location in 1968. Many musicians, poets and filmmakers, including Robert Heide, Jackie Curtis and of course, Warhol, made their mark at La MaMa. The theater is still around and as avant-garde as ever — a recent offering included an adaptation of Hamlet in Korean.

View Andy Warhol’s Downtown New York in a larger map.