Julio Santo Domingo was a businessman, French literature scholar, Beat enthusiast, collector and visionary who filled his homes and warehouses with one of the world’s most expansive private collections of drugs, sex, magic, and rock ‘n’ roll memorabilia.
We’re not talking stamps and postcards here. We’re talking works by Andy Warhol, Timothy Leary, Freud, Baudelaire, Allen Ginsberg, and the Rolling Stones, private correspondences with Keith Moon, photographs of himself with Bono, Chuck Berry, and David Bowie, a shrivelled grapefruit his friend Keith Richards used as “wrapping paper” for a ring he gifted to Ron Wood, and so, so much more.
Julio Santo Domingo’s staggering collection of sex, drug and rock ‘n’ roll memorabilia culminates in new book, Altered States: The Library of Julio Santo Domingo.
For the first time, Santo Domingo’s extraordinary collection has been documented in an epic tome. It’s called Altered States: The Library of Julio Santo Domingo.
While the book is most definitely a rabbit hole of eye-candy for any discerning rock and roll fan, it’s also an exploration of the effects of drugs on life, politics and popular culture “that’s comprehensive and fantastical, informative and hallucinatory all at once.”
“The bulk of the collection…explores drug use by individuals, and the influence such use and users had on their society, with emphasis on the 1800s and 1900s in America and France,” writes Leslie A. Morris in the book’s foreword. As Garage note, Morris is the Curator of Modern Books and Manuscripts at Harvard University’s Houghton Library, where Santo Domingo’s collection is currently housed.
Drug-related treasures found in the book include an LSD blotter sheet decorated with a psychedelic portrait of Timothy Leary, lab equipment used to synthesise the first MDMA, and cocaine vials produced by Parke, Davis & Co. in the late 19th century.
You can see a selection of incredible images from the book below, or have a look here via publishing house/record label, Anthology.