Sundays 8pm to 11pm on Radio 2
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Here's a question: how does a person go from being a stockbroker - the epitome of Establishment - to becoming a celebrated visual artist; a Vietnam war-protesting student of Tibetan Buddhism; a lover of Andy Warhol; and a collaborator with William S. Burroughs and Alan Ginsberg, the fathers of the Beat Generation? The answer? Hard work, good luck, and some friends in high places.
John Giorno was born in New York in 1936. And after graduating from Columbia University in 1958, he spent some time as a finance man. But he gave up on that life when he met Andy Warhol at a party in 1962. John would find in Warhol not just a lover but a mentor - one that helped him hone his talent as an artist and poet. John was the star of Andy Warhol's film 'Sleep'.
And if you've ever heard of the Dial-a-something concept, well, you've got John to thank for that. He took the idea of bringing art together with technology and in one of the first installations of its kind, John made poetry available to the masses. Some of it pornographic for the times, some of it aggressively political, all of it highly compelling.