RIP: Glenn O’Brien, Writer and Downtown Icon, Aged 70

April 8th, 2017

Glenn O'Brien, via NYT
Glenn O’Brien, via NYT

Glenn O’Brien, writer, editor, creative director and founder of the famed downtown public-access television show TV Party, has passed away at the age of 70.  

O’Brien’s footprint among the art and music scene of downtown New York looms large, having worked as an early writer and editor for Interview before striking out on his own with TV Party.  The raucous public-access program hosted a stream of artists and musicians, among them Jean-Michel Basquiat, who O’Brien would later work with for the film Downtown 81.

Glenn O'Brien with Mick Jones of The Clash, via NYT
Glenn O’Brien with Mick Jones of The Clash, via NYT

O’Brien would continue working as a writer and editor, as well as taking on occasional work as a creative director or curator over the years.  He wrote copy for Calvin Klein, edited Madonna’s book Sex, and worked as editor at High Times magazine for years, before settling into his long-running column, The Style Guy, at GQ.  O’Brien is survived by his two sons, and his wife, Gina Nanni.

Glenn O'Brien, via Vogue
Glenn O’Brien, via Vogue

Read more:
Glenn O’Brien, Writer and Editor Who Gained Fame With Warhol, Dies at 70 [NYT]
RIP: Glenn O’Brien, Style Guy Nonpareil [Vogue]
Writer, Warhol associate and TV Party host Glenn O’Brien dies aged 70 [The Guardian]