Tosh Carrillo, “Arthur,” c. 1970

Macario “Tosh” Carrillo was an actor, props designer, and photographer before his death in 1983, during the earliest days of the AIDS crisis. He starred in several Andy Warhol movies (Camp, Vinyl, Horse) and performed in New York avant-garde theater during the mid-1960s.

In her reporting on the exhibition Axis Mundo: Queer Networks in Chicano LA, which featured a number of Carrillo’s works, Carolina Miranda writes, “Throughout his career, Carrillo was identified as Puerto Rican. But he was actually Mexican American: born in Texas and likely raised in the Los Angeles area, with family scattered around California. By the ’70s he had relocated to San Francisco where he launched a design firm.”

Axis Mundo featured images from Carrillo’s archive of negatives, including “a series of black-and-white photographs that capture his creative and social milieu: matter-of-fact images featuring androgynous young bohemians, a mustachioed man posing with eyeliner and turban, a playful young woman covered in feathers.”

Photo: Macario “Tosh” Carrillo, Arthur, c. 1970 (Charles Boultenhouse and Tyler Parker Papers, Manuscripts and Archives Division, The New York Public Library, Astor, Lenox and Tilden Foundations)