Michael Montfort R.I.P. (1 Viewer)

What's the latest on Michael Montfort?

I had been trying, for months, to find out what happened to Michael. We
collaborated together on some etching projects that were exhibited here:

http://www.coagula.com/gallery/01.html

I met Michael through Sholom ("Red") Stodolsky, whom I knew for years, as a customer first, and later as a friend. We did a few projects and remained in contact until he and his wife Alena moved to Prague. Anyhow, I've been trying to find contact information for Michael. We lost touch after he had his stroke, and I never was able to find him. Now I read this sad news about Alena, whom I knew well when the lived here. I would be grateful to have Michael's e-mail address or even snail-mail address, if anyone on this forum can provide it.

Appreciatively,

Gary Eisenberg
 
Michael has moved to Germany.
He has no e-mail-adr, since he is not connected to the internet at all, at the moment.
 
Last contact was about half a year ago, or three quaters of a year.
He is o.k., but not really good. A little bitter, - at least that's my impression. But, sure, he has EVERY right to be bitter.
 

bospress.net

www.bospress.net
Hi,
I talked to him about 4 years ago and he seemed bitter then. Actually more just plain annoyed by me. Of course he had been drinking. I called a friend of mine and was talking to him when he said "Hold on Montfort wants to talk to you" and handed me the phone. It was very strange and neither of us was comfortable, I think. Still. Seemed like a nice enough guy and he has had more than his share of sorrow lately.

This drinking... I think that Montfort's wife did not know that he drank (or pretended not to know). He would drink in the house and then throw the bottles away before his wife got home. The story that I heard was that he did not want her to find them in the trash either, so he would go down the street to dump them in someone else's trash.

Bill
 

bospress.net

www.bospress.net
I don't know about the right to be bitter, but I do know that he has had some tragedy in the last year or two. He had a massive stroke a while back and then his wife died recently. He had moved to the Czech republic because that was where his wife was from, but then moved back to Germany after his wife died.

mjp, How was he when you met him?

Best,
Bill

p.s. How do you use this FORUM Thing? And what the heck are these computer things that I hear people talk about?
 

mjp

Founding member
p.s. How do you use this FORUM Thing? And what the heck are these computer things that I hear people talk about?
Ha ha ha - CLICK THE BUTTONS, MOTHERFUCKER!

When I met Montfort he was a nice guy. We sat around for a few hours and bullshitted and if he seemed bitter at all it was only toward Linda, who he would refer to only as "The Widow." A few times during the conversation I asked him why he was pissed at her, but he wouldn't say.

I understand he's had a rough go of it, and I was sorry to hear about his problems.

This is just my opinion, but if he's bitter about anything Bukowski-related, he shouldn't be. We know Montfort's name only because of Bukowski. If he got screwed by Black Sparrow somewhere along the line, well, that sucks. He did a lot to perpetuate Bukowski's public image.

But honestly, if it hadn't been him it would have been someone else. Maybe not on such an intimate, millions of photos level, but photos would have been taken of Bukowski. And I think that's why Martin and Linda may have discounted him a bit.

But photographing Bukowski as much as he did was really kind of a life's work, a big conceptual art project, and he should be proud of it. Our image of Bukowski would undoubtedly be different without Michael Montfort. I salute him.
 

hank solo

Just practicin' steps and keepin' outta the fights
Reaper Crew
Moderator
Founding member
But photographing Bukowski as much as he did was really kind of a life's work, a big conceptual art project, and he should be proud of it. Our image of Bukowski would undoubtedly be different without Michael Montfort. I salute him.

Hear hear!
 
Bill has already told the story. It was this tragedy in personal life, I was referring to. Not happenings in business. (btw. he still calls Linda only "The Widow".)
He didn't recover too well from his stroke. Then it was Alena (his wife) who was caring A LOT for him - then she died. And (beliefe it or not): he also seems to have some money problems. Maybe he lost a lot of money for his hospital-treatments, I don't know.
Anyway, I think all this made it easy to look at things not too happy or optimistic. (Though in conversation he often has a tone in his voice, that sounds like being in a good mood, but - at least how I feel it - there is some bitterness behind this frolic tone.)
 

HenryChinaski

Founding member
But photographing Bukowski as much as he did was really kind of a life's work, a big conceptual art project, and he should be proud of it. Our image of Bukowski would undoubtedly be different without Michael Montfort. I salute him.

yes sir, youre exactly right. i think we all salute him.
 

cirerita

Founding member
When I interviewed him at his LA place -actually on top of a hill overlooking LA- he was sure angry at Linda. Quite a few snide remarks during our conversation. He refused to be videotaped, unlike most of the other people I could interview. But I would say his overall mood was not an angry one. More than anything else, he seemed tired. And he talked about Buk in extremely flattering terms.
He didn't show me his Bukowski collection, but I didn't ask him to. He was friendly in a very German way ;)
 

Rekrab

Usually wrong.
My wife spoke with Michael Monfort on the phone once (he bought a book from us) and he was very cordial, very entertaining. She had a good impression of him. This was maybe 10 or 15 years ago. I never spoke with him myself. We owe him a debt of gratitute for taking so many great, iconic photos of Buk. Indeed, he changed the way Bukowski is viewed by the world. I wish him well.
 

reasonknot

Founding member
montforts buk cllection

this all reminds me of that age old post

remember that lost calalog 53 book?that i cant find
it was a mysterious reference to montforts sweet buk collection

did anyone ever get a copy of that?it was wierd because it said
in fine print something like "here is the record of work'the rest is up to you"
 

hank solo

Just practicin' steps and keepin' outta the fights
Reaper Crew
Moderator
Founding member
The Simon Finch catalogue?

A PDF of it (minus the photo section and cover) is still available from the Simon Finch site.

NOTE
The catalogue is arranged, where possible, in date order. A few undateable or variously-dated items are placed in the final section. Concordances are given at the end of the catalogue. After that, you're on your own.​

http://www.simonfinch.com/content_repository/Cat54.pdf
 
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bospress.net

www.bospress.net
Hi,

I just got the sad news that Michael Montfort has passed away.

Condolences to his family.

If we can find out about the arrangements, maybe we can send flowers.

Bill
 
note:

still unconfirmed.
neither Benno Kaesmayr nor Carl Weissner know about it.
Both have talked with him recently (Benno on Friday).

of course, it IS perfectly possible.
plus: he didn't answer the phone the whole day.

so ...
 
For what it's worth, I noticed this headline on ebay last night at about midnight California time. So it seems that word is coming out from a couple of sources.

CHARLES BUKOWSKI, Jack Saunders- (RIP MICHAEL MONTFORT)

I've written the seller to see if he has any additional information.

Here's the response I got from the seller:

This comes straight from Linda B., Montfort never really recovered from the loss of his wife and his own stroke.
 
very sad news. condolences to the montfort family and friends. may his legacy live on...

montfort.jpg
 

Ponder

"So fuck Doubleday Doran"
RIP
I got an email. I guess this is the confirmation.

It reads:

-- "S.A. Griffin
from Linda B. that Michael Montfort has passed away. She doesn't know much of anything else except that he is gone. No more suffering.
 

Father Luke

Founding member
I got an email. I guess this is the confirmation.

It reads:

". . . he is gone. No more suffering."


Thank you Ponder. And thank you Bill. And MDR (Marina Del Ray)

I think that a note to his daughter would be nice.

Count me in for the memorial.
He deserved happiness.
 

Bukfan

"The law is wrong; I am right"
That's sad news indeed! - R.I.P. Michael Montfort, and thank you, for all the fine Buk photo's you gave us! My condolences to his family.

I'm in on flowers too...
 
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