(MENAFN -Arab News) ST. PETERSBURG, Florida: Long before she married and had babies and adopted babies, and a lifetime before she opened an Instagram account, Madonna was a young woman in New York trying to make it big.
That ambition — and a good bit of innocence — can be seen in a collection of photos, art and drawings that are on the auction block Feb. 9 in St. Petersburg, Florida.
The collection is owned by the parents of Martin Burgoyne, an artist, Studio 54 bartender and Madonna’s best friend during that time.
Burgoyne and Madonna befriended each other before she became famous. They were roommates and he played a huge role in Madonna’s early career. He managed her first tour and drew the cover image of Madonna for her 1983 ‘Burning Up’ EP album cover. They partied with artists Andy Warhol, Keith Haring and others. He was raised in England and went to New York to study art at the Pratt Institute.
Madonna and Burgoyne also supported each other emotionally and financially during hard times — after she was raped and when Burgoyne contracted AIDS.
Burgoyne died in 1986 after battling that disease. He was 23. Madonna wrote a song about him called “In This Life” that was on her 1992 album ‘Erotica.’
For decades, his parents have kept their son’s memorabilia from that era private — until now.
Mary Dowd, the co-owner of Myers Fine Art, said Burgoyne’s parents live in the Tampa Bay area and are in their 80s. They are selling the collection at an auction.