June 07, 2014


It was a hot June morning in New York when after a long hike up an endless flight of stairs, I met the photographer and filmmaker James Bidgood. Famous for his ethereal photography of beautiful young men in the 1960s, James Bidgood directed, produced and wrote the iconic 1971 film Pink Narcissus, starring Bobby Kendall. Nearly all of the film was shot in Mr. Bidgood’s Hell’s Kitchen apartment between 1963 and 1971 where he lived within the sets he built. Before the film reached completion, it was taken from him by investors and edited without his involvement, creating something Bidgood says he couldn’t even follow himself or stay awake through. Devastated after having spent the past seven years of his life making the film, he refused to sign his name to the project and for years it was credited to ‘Anonymous’, which led many to think that perhaps Andy Warhol was behind it. When I arrived at his apartment, Mr. Bidgood asked the first question.