Anita Pallenberg, Former Girlfriend of Keith Richards, Dead at 73

Anita Pallenberg and Keith Richards

R.I.P. Anita Pallenberg 1944-2017 by Paul Cashmere

Anita Pallenberg, the Barbella actress and model, has died at the age of 73.

Pallenberg was born in Rome and became a model in Paris; She met Jones and the Rolling Stones during 1965 in Munich, beginning a volatile relationship until she took up with Richards during the spring of 1967.

The news was made public on Instagram by Stella Schnabel, the daughter of American painter and filmmaker John Schnabel. She and Richards went onto have three children, Marlon, Angela and Tara, although their youngest died when she was just 10 weeks old due to pneumonia.

In Richards' biography Life, he says that she also had a fling with singer Mick Jagger.

Mick Jagger enjoys a bath with Michele Breton and Anita Pallenberg in the film Performance.

Anita Pallenberg was born January 25, 1944, in Rome, Italy.

Pallenberg said her 12-year relationship with Richards "was more respect and friendship than mad love". Being a muse may be unsatisfying, but the various strands of Pallenberg's life twined together to make her an icon, and that is no small thing.

Her leaving Jones for Richards caused a rift in the famed English rock band that contributed to Jones being ousted from the Stones in June, 1969. "The first time I saw Anita my obvious reaction was 'What the fuck is a chick like that doing with Brian?'" Keith recalled later. As Stanley Booth writes in The True Adventures of the Rolling Stones, "Brian and Anita were into blowing people's minds". However, Pallenberg left Jones for Richards, which led to a tumultuous relationship before they broke up in 1980.

Described as the woman who "almost broke up The Rolling Stones", Pallenberg was revered as a huge influence on sixties subculture.

Pallenberg said that she started using heroin while she was filming Performance, and Richards wrote about his drug-induced "descent into hell" with the actress in his book. Back in NY again with my then boyfriend we hung out with all the pop artists: "Warhol, Nico and that lot". Expelled at 16, she eventually came to NY and hung out with Andy Warhol. In later life she, like Faithfull, acted as a sort of fairy godmother to the girls who recreated themselves in her image, Kate Moss included. She had an allotment in Chiswick and spent her days drawing botanicals. "I grow vegetables - I'm a vegetarian", she told The Guardian in 2008.

Latest News