The Reason Bob Dylan Had A Pretty Tense Relationship With Andy Warhol

"The day Bob Dylan visited the Factory and had his Screen Test shot is a fabled episode in the lore of the Warhol 1960s," Callie Angell, famed Andy Warhol biographer, once wrote. The day in question happened sometime in the summer of 1965, when Bob Dylan first met the pop artist at his own iconic studio in New York City. According to Far Out Magazine, the two were rendezvousing in order to carry out a few screen tests in which Dylan was the subject (it was around this time that Andy Warhol was cutting his teeth in the game of experimental cinema). 

One might think that a run in between these two cultural giants of contemporary history might have been the bedrock of a close friendship or artistic collaboration, but believe it or not, Bob Dylan and Andy Warhol hardly sported a mutual admiration for one another. One might say that there was something of a puritanical schism drawn between the two that prevented any such camaraderie, and at the core of it all was a woman. Her name was Edie Sedgwick (via Cultura Colectiva). 

Edie Sedgwick's relationship with Dylan and Warhol

The bizarre and complex interpersonal correspondence that took place between Bob Dylan, Andy Warhol, and their mutual friend Edie Sedgwick is still somewhat shrouded in speculation decades later. Sedgwick, a model and actress, met Andy Warhol at a birthday party in 1965, as Vanity Fair reports. The pop artist became instantaneously infatuated with her, proclaiming her the grand embodiment of his creative vision. They became close friends off the bat, except there was something of a problem watching from the peripheral: Edie's rumored boyfriend, Mr. Bob Dylan.

Apparently, Dylan didn't have the same fondness for Warhol that his alleged paramour did, and despite his forebodings that the pop artist would eventually tire of her and cast her away like an old toy he no longer wished to play with, she hung in the balance between the two men as they scowled at one another from opposite corners of her life. However, the meet-up that took place at Warhol's Factory in July of 1965 somehow still happened, and whereas an equilibrium of peace may have been established, Dylan regarded Warhol with distain. The iconic screen test still exists though, and it's a remarkable thing to behold in hindsight (per Cultura Colectiva). 

Edie Sedgwick died in 1971

According to Cultura Colectiva, much of what took place between the three has been relayed anecdotally over the years by those who were present throughout it all. Edie Sedgwick and Andy Warhol ultimately had a falling out — perhaps for the same reasons that Bob Dylan predicted, perhaps not — and ceased spending time together. She also ended all correspondence with Dylan, and soon after became enraptured by a cyclone of depression, isolation, and rampant drug use. She died in 1971 at the age of 28 (per Biography).

As to what or who is to blame, or if anyone or anything at all is to blame, nobody truly knows. Sedgwick, who for years has been called the "muse" of both Bob Dylan and Andy Warhol, remains one of those puzzling, poetically tragic enigmas of recent years. In 2006, Sienna Miller portrayed the late actress in George Hickenlooper's "Factory Girl," a biopic depicting her short but iconic life.