Willard Maas

Willard Maas (b. 24 June 1906 - 2 January 1971) was an American experimental filmmaker and poet.

Biography He was the husband of filmmaker Marie Menken. The couple achieved some renown in New York City's modern art world of the 1940s through the 1960s, both for their experimental films and for their salons, which brought together artists, writers, filmmakers and intellectuals.http://www.eai.org/eai/tape.jsp?itemID=8361

According to their associate, Andy Warhol, 'Willard and Marie were the last of the great bohemians. They wrote and filmed and drank -- their friends called them 'scholarly drunks' -- and were involved with all the modern poets.'http://www.eai.org/eai/tape.jsp?itemID=8361

In the 1960s, Maas was a faculty member at Wagner College and an organizer of the New York City Writer's Conference at the college where Edward Albee was a writer in residence. The filmmaker Kenneth Anger indicates that Maas and Menken may have been a significant part of the inspiration for the characters of George and Martha in Edward Albee's 1962 play Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (Scott McDonald - 'A Critical Cinema: Interviews with Independent Filmmakers' (University of California Press - 1988).

Maas died on January 2 1971, four days after Menken had died of alcohol related illness. He was cremated.

The Maas/Menken materials and letters are located at the University of Texas (in Austin). A selection of these items is on deposit/loan (in Trust) at the Anthology Film Archives in New York. The Willard Maas Papers - a collection of approximately 500 letters, manuscripts, page proofs, photographs, drawings, play scripts, and film scripts from the period 1931-1967 - is housed at Brown University.http://dl.lib.brown.edu/collatoz/info.php?id=214



United States

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