Holly Woodlawn was immortalised in the Lou Reed song ‘Walk on the Wild Side' and has been described as the most famous drag queen in the world. Part of the Andy Warhol set, Holly was born Harold Azjenberg in Puerto Rico in 1946. In later life Holly was hired by the producers of Tootsie to coach Dustin Hoffman on how to be a man acting as a woman. For the first time Holly has allowed herself to be painted, unadorned and out of costume, by the leading British artist, Sadie Lee. Sadie Lee discusses the work and explains what it was like for a woman to paint pictures of a man who dresses up as a woman.
Sadie’s exhibition, ‘And then He was a She – Paintings of Holly Woodlawn’ opens this weekend, running from 28 April – 27 May 2007 at Salford Museum & Art Gallery.