"International Velvet"


International Velvet and Andy Warhol, Stephen Shore, 1965-1967

Susan Bottomly was expelled not once, but four times from her prestigious New England boarding school. At sixteen, she graced the cover of Mademoiselle.

She was introduced to Andy Warhol at a party in her native Boston. Her newfound success soon brought her to New York, and again into the presence of Warhol, who  admired her beauty. Warhol’s love for and ties to the Velvet Underground led him to naming her: "International Velvet." Her hefty allowance funded a permanent stay at the Chelsea Hotel, and she utilized her father's wealth and success to connect Warhol to potential financial backers. She was featured in Chelsea Girls, Warhol's most successful 1960s film, both critically and financially. When she wasn't traipsing around town with Warhol, she engaged in multiple love affairs, one with Christian Marquand, with whom she moved to Italy. She returned to New York City the day before Warhol was shot; throughout Warhol's recovery, the dynamics quickly changed. International Velvet was replaced by Viva as the "queen" of The Factory, and the model reverted to her life as Susan Bottomly.

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