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December 6, 2023

Tina Turner and Andy Warhol Share Some Watermelon at a Party in 1981

Andy Warhol rubbed shoulders with many celebrities, including the Queen of Rock n’ Roll herself: Tina Turner. They were photographed sharing a slice of watermelon at the Limelight disco nightclub in Atlanta, Georgia in 1981.

Warhol mentions Turner in his August 2nd, 1985 diary entry, praising the performer for her jazzy dance moves: “The Tina Turner concert was great. I thought she was copying Mick Jagger but then somebody told me she taught him how to dance.”

In the late 1970s and early 1980s, New York City was a boiling pot of emerging talent, cutting-edge artistry, and vibrant social scenes. This era saw a blurring of the lines between art, music, fashion, and celebrity – and at the heart of it all were figures like Andy Warhol and Tina Turner.

In this era of experimental art, transformative music, and groundbreaking cultural shifts, Warhol and Turner, two icons of their respective fields, found common ground. The image of the two eating watermelon together is more than a mere snapshot; it’s a testament to a time and place when the lines between art, music, and celebrity blurred into a vibrant tableau of creativity and influence.

Warhol, already a pop art phenomenon, Tina Turner, the “Queen of Rock n’ Roll,” was gearing up for a sensational comeback to catapult her into the stratosphere of music legends.

As we look back on this era, it’s these moments that remind us of the human stories behind the icons. The photographs of Warhol and Turner, engrossed in their shared slice of watermelon, encapsulates not only their friendship but also the spirit of an era – a time of creativity, experimentation, and transformation in New York City’s illustrious history.


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