Art Fag City at The L Magazine: The Life And Death of Dash Snow

by Art Fag City on July 22, 2009 · 55 comments The L Magazine

Dash Snow, Peres Projects, art fag city
Artist Dash Snow (July 27, 1981 – July 13, 2009). Image via: Mordechai S Rubinstein

This week at The L Magazine I discuss the life and death of artist Dash Snow.  Judging by what I’ve been reading on a lot of blogs, there are a fair number of critics left unconvinced by his work.  I take a look at some of this criticism, but ultimately decide it warrants another look.  Read the teaser and click through to find out why.

When I type “27” into Google, “Dash Snow Dead, Monday, July 13” appears third in the results. I plugged the number into the search engine after speaking to his former lover Kathryn Garcia, about his recent death. “Twenty-seven,” she said, without explaining the term. She was referring to the age at which drug-addicted icons like Jimi Hendrix, Kurt Cobain and Janis Joplin died. Many who knew Dash Snow, or were familiar with his work, now see him taking his place among the legendary “27 club.”

But the art world, and the larger sphere of culture consumers, have been reluctant to embrace his art. Even Snow himself didn't initially consider his practice fine art. “I mean, I remember the first time I hung out with him and went to his house,” the artist's dealer Javier Peres recalled. “He didn't consider himself an artist per se. He was, at that point, just taking photographs to sort of remember and document what he and his friends were getting up to. And it was more like he was creating a scrapbook for everybody's benefit, you know?”

As his exhibition history grew, Snow naturally came to think of himself as an artist. Not that this did much to convince critics; anyone who knows his work and pedigree would recognize the difficulty in taming the media. After all, Dash Snow was a member of the prominent de Menil family, described by New York Magazine as art collector “royalty.” And in the same way his privileged lineage met with raised eyebrows, Snow's art was viewed with no small amount of skepticism. Polaroids of the artist having sex with multiple women, coke-lined turntables and ejaculate-drenched newspapers with cop headlines aren't usually crowd-pleasers, even if they make a good media story. The artwork seems a product of excessive lifestyles, which people frequently begrudge.

Certainly, I've had my own reservations about Snow's work. I don't trust press-magnet art. I'm also not immune to the biases of the art world, though I may recognize they contain absurd double standards. For instance, we regularly place greater faith in art made by the mentally unstable than that made by people with debilitating drug addictions. Almost without fail, the latter appears lazy and indulgent whereas the former is a unique deviation pregnant with creative potential.

To read the full piece click here.

  • http://www.unutterable.org Giovanni

    I have concerns about several points in this piece. I don’t think it’s at all true that we place greater faith in the mentally ill than drug addicts. Dash’s New York Magazine profile, the comparisons to Jean Michel Basquiat and to dead rock stars, the claim that his drug use was a result of his “sensitivity” all belie that statement. We might all love Henry Darger’s work, but no one was celebrating the poor guy when he was alive.

    I don’t see the amount of money Dash spent on Polaroids as a sign of anything but the ability and willingness to take a lot of photos. And what of the claim that his art was somehow about New York after 9/11? Aside from the dates, how exactly was that true? What was in his Polaroids that made them post-9/11 as opposed to, say, predictable descendants of Nan Goldin or Larry Clark’s photographs of decadent youth?

    I also fail to see the delicate touch of his collages – the content seems really jejune. Seriously – the NY Post? I think we will have to wait a few years to get a more objective view of the worth (or lack of it) of Dash’s ouevre.

  • http://www.unutterable.org Giovanni

    I have concerns about several points in this piece. I don’t think it’s at all true that we place greater faith in the mentally ill than drug addicts. Dash’s New York Magazine profile, the comparisons to Jean Michel Basquiat and to dead rock stars, the claim that his drug use was a result of his “sensitivity” all belie that statement. We might all love Henry Darger’s work, but no one was celebrating the poor guy when he was alive.

    I don’t see the amount of money Dash spent on Polaroids as a sign of anything but the ability and willingness to take a lot of photos. And what of the claim that his art was somehow about New York after 9/11? Aside from the dates, how exactly was that true? What was in his Polaroids that made them post-9/11 as opposed to, say, predictable descendants of Nan Goldin or Larry Clark’s photographs of decadent youth?

    I also fail to see the delicate touch of his collages – the content seems really jejune. Seriously – the NY Post? I think we will have to wait a few years to get a more objective view of the worth (or lack of it) of Dash’s ouevre.

  • http://www.unutterable.org Giovanni

    I have concerns about several points in this piece. I don’t think it’s at all true that we place greater faith in the mentally ill than drug addicts. Dash’s New York Magazine profile, the comparisons to Jean Michel Basquiat and to dead rock stars, the claim that his drug use was a result of his “sensitivity” all belie that statement. We might all love Henry Darger’s work, but no one was celebrating the poor guy when he was alive.

    I don’t see the amount of money Dash spent on Polaroids as a sign of anything but the ability and willingness to take a lot of photos. And what of the claim that his art was somehow about New York after 9/11? Aside from the dates, how exactly was that true? What was in his Polaroids that made them post-9/11 as opposed to, say, predictable descendants of Nan Goldin or Larry Clark’s photographs of decadent youth?

    I also fail to see the delicate touch of his collages – the content seems really jejune. Seriously – the NY Post? I think we will have to wait a few years to get a more objective view of the worth (or lack of it) of Dash’s ouevre.

  • http://www.unutterable.org Giovanni

    (I should have pointed out that my response is to the full article in The L Magazine, not just the portion on this post!)

  • http://www.unutterable.org Giovanni

    (I should have pointed out that my response is to the full article in The L Magazine, not just the portion on this post!)

  • http://www.artfagcity.com Art Fag City

    I think the difference here is that being under the influence of drugs while working is typically not seen by anyone as a means of improving the work. Nobody is denying the modernist myth of artists so sensitive they eventually killed themselves. By contrast, the permanent condition of mental instability is romanticized as something that creates unique creative possibilities.

    Just for clarity, the piece talks about Peres Projects fronting the money for Dashes Polaroids, not Dash himself. The point I was making was not that he took a lot of photos and therefore he must be “good” but that the range of shots was far broader than the “party shots” so many people describe. Also, I’d like to make a distinction between the collages and the framed NYPost ejaculate work. The latter I’m not all that fond of either, though I do find it less problematic contextualized within his larger body of wok.

    I don’t see the problem in contextualizing the work as post 9/11 anger, particularly since this came from a close personal friend. If he himself contextualized the work that way, I’m not going to argue with it.

    Anyway, I think there’s more to this work than people are talking about. This isn’t to say I’m not critical of the work — I don’t like all of it — but I don’t think it deserves the wholesale dismissal I’ve read.

  • http://www.artfagcity.com Art Fag City

    I think the difference here is that being under the influence of drugs while working is typically not seen by anyone as a means of improving the work. Nobody is denying the modernist myth of artists so sensitive they eventually killed themselves. By contrast, the permanent condition of mental instability is romanticized as something that creates unique creative possibilities.

    Just for clarity, the piece talks about Peres Projects fronting the money for Dashes Polaroids, not Dash himself. The point I was making was not that he took a lot of photos and therefore he must be “good” but that the range of shots was far broader than the “party shots” so many people describe. Also, I’d like to make a distinction between the collages and the framed NYPost ejaculate work. The latter I’m not all that fond of either, though I do find it less problematic contextualized within his larger body of wok.

    I don’t see the problem in contextualizing the work as post 9/11 anger, particularly since this came from a close personal friend. If he himself contextualized the work that way, I’m not going to argue with it.

    Anyway, I think there’s more to this work than people are talking about. This isn’t to say I’m not critical of the work — I don’t like all of it — but I don’t think it deserves the wholesale dismissal I’ve read.

  • http://www.artfagcity.com Art Fag City

    I think the difference here is that being under the influence of drugs while working is typically not seen by anyone as a means of improving the work. Nobody is denying the modernist myth of artists so sensitive they eventually killed themselves. By contrast, the permanent condition of mental instability is romanticized as something that creates unique creative possibilities.

    Just for clarity, the piece talks about Peres Projects fronting the money for Dashes Polaroids, not Dash himself. The point I was making was not that he took a lot of photos and therefore he must be “good” but that the range of shots was far broader than the “party shots” so many people describe. Also, I’d like to make a distinction between the collages and the framed NYPost ejaculate work. The latter I’m not all that fond of either, though I do find it less problematic contextualized within his larger body of wok.

    I don’t see the problem in contextualizing the work as post 9/11 anger, particularly since this came from a close personal friend. If he himself contextualized the work that way, I’m not going to argue with it.

    Anyway, I think there’s more to this work than people are talking about. This isn’t to say I’m not critical of the work — I don’t like all of it — but I don’t think it deserves the wholesale dismissal I’ve read.

  • http://www.artfagcity.com Art Fag City

    I think the difference here is that being under the influence of drugs while working is typically not seen by anyone as a means of improving the work. Nobody is denying the modernist myth of artists so sensitive they eventually killed themselves. By contrast, the permanent condition of mental instability is romanticized as something that creates unique creative possibilities.

    Just for clarity, the piece talks about Peres Projects fronting the money for Dashes Polaroids, not Dash himself. The point I was making was not that he took a lot of photos and therefore he must be “good” but that the range of shots was far broader than the “party shots” so many people describe. Also, I’d like to make a distinction between the collages and the framed NYPost ejaculate work. The latter I’m not all that fond of either, though I do find it less problematic contextualized within his larger body of wok.

    I don’t see the problem in contextualizing the work as post 9/11 anger, particularly since this came from a close personal friend. If he himself contextualized the work that way, I’m not going to argue with it.

    Anyway, I think there’s more to this work than people are talking about. This isn’t to say I’m not critical of the work — I don’t like all of it — but I don’t think it deserves the wholesale dismissal I’ve read.

  • simz

    “This is New York arts getting some of the attention it finally deserves”…. yeah, New York arts never get any attention! I’m SO SHOCKED that there is a blossoming arts community on the LES. (psych)

  • simz

    “This is New York arts getting some of the attention it finally deserves”…. yeah, New York arts never get any attention! I’m SO SHOCKED that there is a blossoming arts community on the LES. (psych)

  • simz

    “This is New York arts getting some of the attention it finally deserves”…. yeah, New York arts never get any attention! I’m SO SHOCKED that there is a blossoming arts community on the LES. (psych)

  • simz

    btw that statement was made by Phil Grauer, quoted in the article

  • simz

    btw that statement was made by Phil Grauer, quoted in the article

  • http://www.artfagcity.com Art Fag City

    I guess it’s all relative. I mean, I think a lot of LES galleries still struggle along side Chelsea. There’s something compelling about the idea anyway. That said, things aren’t the same as they used to be. LES arts community does seem to be getting a fair amount of attention with or without Dash Snow.

  • http://www.artfagcity.com Art Fag City

    I guess it’s all relative. I mean, I think a lot of LES galleries still struggle along side Chelsea. There’s something compelling about the idea anyway. That said, things aren’t the same as they used to be. LES arts community does seem to be getting a fair amount of attention with or without Dash Snow.

  • http://eageageag.blogspot.com eageageag
  • http://eageageag.blogspot.com eageageag
  • http://eageageag.blogspot.com eageageag
  • http://eageageag.blogspot.com eageageag
  • http://eageageag.blogspot.com eageageag
  • not buying it

    From the testimonials given in this article, I dont see why Dash being a misunderstood ‘pure’and kind soul lends his work any more positive valuation. Once again, it seems like another example of the art world buying more into the persona and myth of Snow (dead or alive) than gauging the work on its own merits. It seems impossible to divorce this artist and his community from the work itself, and that to me is very problematic because I dont understand why anyone should care about his circle of downtown scenesters, aside from the fact that they partied hard with the right ppl and looked great doing it. If his work is meant to be an artifact of a specific period of downtown youth culture, lets just leave it to Vice magazine to catalog for posterity.

  • not buying it

    From the testimonials given in this article, I dont see why Dash being a misunderstood ‘pure’and kind soul lends his work any more positive valuation. Once again, it seems like another example of the art world buying more into the persona and myth of Snow (dead or alive) than gauging the work on its own merits. It seems impossible to divorce this artist and his community from the work itself, and that to me is very problematic because I dont understand why anyone should care about his circle of downtown scenesters, aside from the fact that they partied hard with the right ppl and looked great doing it. If his work is meant to be an artifact of a specific period of downtown youth culture, lets just leave it to Vice magazine to catalog for posterity.

  • not buying it

    From the testimonials given in this article, I dont see why Dash being a misunderstood ‘pure’and kind soul lends his work any more positive valuation. Once again, it seems like another example of the art world buying more into the persona and myth of Snow (dead or alive) than gauging the work on its own merits. It seems impossible to divorce this artist and his community from the work itself, and that to me is very problematic because I dont understand why anyone should care about his circle of downtown scenesters, aside from the fact that they partied hard with the right ppl and looked great doing it. If his work is meant to be an artifact of a specific period of downtown youth culture, lets just leave it to Vice magazine to catalog for posterity.

  • not buying it

    From the testimonials given in this article, I dont see why Dash being a misunderstood ‘pure’and kind soul lends his work any more positive valuation. Once again, it seems like another example of the art world buying more into the persona and myth of Snow (dead or alive) than gauging the work on its own merits. It seems impossible to divorce this artist and his community from the work itself, and that to me is very problematic because I dont understand why anyone should care about his circle of downtown scenesters, aside from the fact that they partied hard with the right ppl and looked great doing it. If his work is meant to be an artifact of a specific period of downtown youth culture, lets just leave it to Vice magazine to catalog for posterity.

  • not buying it

    From the testimonials given in this article, I dont see why Dash being a misunderstood ‘pure’and kind soul lends his work any more positive valuation. Once again, it seems like another example of the art world buying more into the persona and myth of Snow (dead or alive) than gauging the work on its own merits. It seems impossible to divorce this artist and his community from the work itself, and that to me is very problematic because I dont understand why anyone should care about his circle of downtown scenesters, aside from the fact that they partied hard with the right ppl and looked great doing it. If his work is meant to be an artifact of a specific period of downtown youth culture, lets just leave it to Vice magazine to catalog for posterity.

  • http://davidmcbride.net David

    I liked Dash Snow’s collages enough to recommend them to someone whose opinion I respect quite a bit, before knowing anything about the guy. So to say I don’t like some of his work would be a lie.

    But it’s clear to me that he gets a free ride on a lot of things that a lot of other people don’t, and gestures made by him that are also made by lots of others are more valued when he did them. Is it because his relatives had a part in founding the Guggenheim? Well, who knows?

    I don’t like the way the L piece casts as prudes those in art world who doubt the myth of Dash Snow. I’m in no way averse to substances. The problem is, his accomplishments are disproportionate to his reputation.

    No way does he fit into the same category as the more notorious members of the ’27 club’, no way. Come on, you know? But his story is a myth, and the L magazine piece, by focusing on the hearsay of friends and by offering precious little to substantiate the work, functions as a kind of vanity piece that contributes to the myth.

    Of course, in spite of there being very little hard-won accomplishments, art history is full of myths, and AFC will probably benefit more by enhancing a largely unmerited reputation than neglecting it. But it’s a shame to me to find purportedly alternative art world viewpoints engaging in this kind of journalism.

  • http://davidmcbride.net David

    I liked Dash Snow’s collages enough to recommend them to someone whose opinion I respect quite a bit, before knowing anything about the guy. So to say I don’t like some of his work would be a lie.

    But it’s clear to me that he gets a free ride on a lot of things that a lot of other people don’t, and gestures made by him that are also made by lots of others are more valued when he did them. Is it because his relatives had a part in founding the Guggenheim? Well, who knows?

    I don’t like the way the L piece casts as prudes those in art world who doubt the myth of Dash Snow. I’m in no way averse to substances. The problem is, his accomplishments are disproportionate to his reputation.

    No way does he fit into the same category as the more notorious members of the ’27 club’, no way. Come on, you know? But his story is a myth, and the L magazine piece, by focusing on the hearsay of friends and by offering precious little to substantiate the work, functions as a kind of vanity piece that contributes to the myth.

    Of course, in spite of there being very little hard-won accomplishments, art history is full of myths, and AFC will probably benefit more by enhancing a largely unmerited reputation than neglecting it. But it’s a shame to me to find purportedly alternative art world viewpoints engaging in this kind of journalism.

  • http://davidmcbride.net David

    I liked Dash Snow’s collages enough to recommend them to someone whose opinion I respect quite a bit, before knowing anything about the guy. So to say I don’t like some of his work would be a lie.

    But it’s clear to me that he gets a free ride on a lot of things that a lot of other people don’t, and gestures made by him that are also made by lots of others are more valued when he did them. Is it because his relatives had a part in founding the Guggenheim? Well, who knows?

    I don’t like the way the L piece casts as prudes those in art world who doubt the myth of Dash Snow. I’m in no way averse to substances. The problem is, his accomplishments are disproportionate to his reputation.

    No way does he fit into the same category as the more notorious members of the ’27 club’, no way. Come on, you know? But his story is a myth, and the L magazine piece, by focusing on the hearsay of friends and by offering precious little to substantiate the work, functions as a kind of vanity piece that contributes to the myth.

    Of course, in spite of there being very little hard-won accomplishments, art history is full of myths, and AFC will probably benefit more by enhancing a largely unmerited reputation than neglecting it. But it’s a shame to me to find purportedly alternative art world viewpoints engaging in this kind of journalism.

  • http://davidmcbride.net David

    I liked Dash Snow’s collages enough to recommend them to someone whose opinion I respect quite a bit, before knowing anything about the guy. So to say I don’t like some of his work would be a lie.

    But it’s clear to me that he gets a free ride on a lot of things that a lot of other people don’t, and gestures made by him that are also made by lots of others are more valued when he did them. Is it because his relatives had a part in founding the Guggenheim? Well, who knows?

    I don’t like the way the L piece casts as prudes those in art world who doubt the myth of Dash Snow. I’m in no way averse to substances. The problem is, his accomplishments are disproportionate to his reputation.

    No way does he fit into the same category as the more notorious members of the ’27 club’, no way. Come on, you know? But his story is a myth, and the L magazine piece, by focusing on the hearsay of friends and by offering precious little to substantiate the work, functions as a kind of vanity piece that contributes to the myth.

    Of course, in spite of there being very little hard-won accomplishments, art history is full of myths, and AFC will probably benefit more by enhancing a largely unmerited reputation than neglecting it. But it’s a shame to me to find purportedly alternative art world viewpoints engaging in this kind of journalism.

  • Andy

    He didn’t spend any money on Polaroids.

  • Andy

    He didn’t spend any money on Polaroids.

  • http://www.artfagcity.com Art Fag City

    @David I take issue with a lot of things said in this comment, but most vehemently with idea that I wrote this piece specifically to benefit from enhancing his reputation. Most of the commentary in the blogosphere (and a lot I’ve heard elsewhere) takes an opposing stance to the idea that ANY of Snow’s work has merit, so writing this piece was not particularly easy. I assumed most of the comments left would resemble a less nice version of what’s been said here (less one notable exception).

    And that’s fine. Frankly, I’d rather discuss the points of disagreement in the hopes of gaining more nuanced understanding of various positions held by artists, dealers, etc, as well as a deeper critical take on the work.

    That said, I’m not sure what the author of this post is supposed to gain from this kind of feedback. Past an unmerited attack on the motivations of this blog to write the piece, its interpretation seems wildly warped. To begin with, I never said those who doubt the myth of Dash Snow are prudes, and I don’t know what it was I wrote that solicited this recasting. Although I ultimately took a more positive stance on the work, I tried to make clear certain reservations, and my own limited experience with the work. How this led to the conclusion that those who doubted the merit of Dash Snow were repressed and unadventurous is a complete mystery.

    Furthermore, I didn’t say he was a member of the 27 club, only that others took that position. Although the difference is acknowledged, little allowance for the fact that features, profiles and reviews have different places isn’t offered. Yeah, I didn’t seek out a lot of negative commentary about Snow. Criticism was acknowledged in the piece, and let’s not forget: He just DIED. For every positive piece written on this artist, there are three others calling bullshit. If there’s anything that needs to be called out IMO, it’s this idea that the “myth building” has changed anyone’s mind on the subject.

  • http://www.artfagcity.com Art Fag City

    @David I take issue with a lot of things said in this comment, but most vehemently with idea that I wrote this piece specifically to benefit from enhancing his reputation. Most of the commentary in the blogosphere (and a lot I’ve heard elsewhere) takes an opposing stance to the idea that ANY of Snow’s work has merit, so writing this piece was not particularly easy. I assumed most of the comments left would resemble a less nice version of what’s been said here (less one notable exception).

    And that’s fine. Frankly, I’d rather discuss the points of disagreement in the hopes of gaining more nuanced understanding of various positions held by artists, dealers, etc, as well as a deeper critical take on the work.

    That said, I’m not sure what the author of this post is supposed to gain from this kind of feedback. Past an unmerited attack on the motivations of this blog to write the piece, its interpretation seems wildly warped. To begin with, I never said those who doubt the myth of Dash Snow are prudes, and I don’t know what it was I wrote that solicited this recasting. Although I ultimately took a more positive stance on the work, I tried to make clear certain reservations, and my own limited experience with the work. How this led to the conclusion that those who doubted the merit of Dash Snow were repressed and unadventurous is a complete mystery.

    Furthermore, I didn’t say he was a member of the 27 club, only that others took that position. Although the difference is acknowledged, little allowance for the fact that features, profiles and reviews have different places isn’t offered. Yeah, I didn’t seek out a lot of negative commentary about Snow. Criticism was acknowledged in the piece, and let’s not forget: He just DIED. For every positive piece written on this artist, there are three others calling bullshit. If there’s anything that needs to be called out IMO, it’s this idea that the “myth building” has changed anyone’s mind on the subject.

  • http://davidmcbride.net David

    I knew I’d be sorry! Let me begin a brief defense by saying I hope this wasn’t taken personally- I visit AFC multiple times daily and, with a few exceptions, am glad to find content like yours, which isn’t easy to come by.

    But I think I have a stake in this, as an artist (which is the scrap I hold on to when I consider my regret for inserting my voice into this discussion). I don’t know if there’s ad hominen support, like there’s ad hominen attacks, but that’s the kind of thing I’m targeting: support and accolades for an artist based on who he or she is, aside from the work. Unlike some of the other comments around here, I’m not hating on him; I think it’s a tragedy, I feel for those close to him. And I like some of his work.

    But it’s hard for me to square the phenomenon of Dash Snow with his artistic achievements. I don’t think it’s impossible that they can be reconciled, either (though, and I know you don’t feel this way, the 27 club thing is over the top). But spending money on film and having a sensitive, pure soul don’t go very far towards explaining what about the work merits the adulation. And it COULD merit the adulation- just, show me the way. Because I know a lot of people who spend money on materials and are sensitive, you know?

    Re: the prude thing, there are legit reasons not to like the artists work that have nothing to do with partying and bodily fluids; but the L article seems to suggest those are the only reasons he had detractors. Maybe I’m over-reading that.

  • http://davidmcbride.net David

    I knew I’d be sorry! Let me begin a brief defense by saying I hope this wasn’t taken personally- I visit AFC multiple times daily and, with a few exceptions, am glad to find content like yours, which isn’t easy to come by.

    But I think I have a stake in this, as an artist (which is the scrap I hold on to when I consider my regret for inserting my voice into this discussion). I don’t know if there’s ad hominen support, like there’s ad hominen attacks, but that’s the kind of thing I’m targeting: support and accolades for an artist based on who he or she is, aside from the work. Unlike some of the other comments around here, I’m not hating on him; I think it’s a tragedy, I feel for those close to him. And I like some of his work.

    But it’s hard for me to square the phenomenon of Dash Snow with his artistic achievements. I don’t think it’s impossible that they can be reconciled, either (though, and I know you don’t feel this way, the 27 club thing is over the top). But spending money on film and having a sensitive, pure soul don’t go very far towards explaining what about the work merits the adulation. And it COULD merit the adulation- just, show me the way. Because I know a lot of people who spend money on materials and are sensitive, you know?

    Re: the prude thing, there are legit reasons not to like the artists work that have nothing to do with partying and bodily fluids; but the L article seems to suggest those are the only reasons he had detractors. Maybe I’m over-reading that.

  • http://davidmcbride.net David

    I knew I’d be sorry! Let me begin a brief defense by saying I hope this wasn’t taken personally- I visit AFC multiple times daily and, with a few exceptions, am glad to find content like yours, which isn’t easy to come by.

    But I think I have a stake in this, as an artist (which is the scrap I hold on to when I consider my regret for inserting my voice into this discussion). I don’t know if there’s ad hominen support, like there’s ad hominen attacks, but that’s the kind of thing I’m targeting: support and accolades for an artist based on who he or she is, aside from the work. Unlike some of the other comments around here, I’m not hating on him; I think it’s a tragedy, I feel for those close to him. And I like some of his work.

    But it’s hard for me to square the phenomenon of Dash Snow with his artistic achievements. I don’t think it’s impossible that they can be reconciled, either (though, and I know you don’t feel this way, the 27 club thing is over the top). But spending money on film and having a sensitive, pure soul don’t go very far towards explaining what about the work merits the adulation. And it COULD merit the adulation- just, show me the way. Because I know a lot of people who spend money on materials and are sensitive, you know?

    Re: the prude thing, there are legit reasons not to like the artists work that have nothing to do with partying and bodily fluids; but the L article seems to suggest those are the only reasons he had detractors. Maybe I’m over-reading that.

  • http://eageageag.blogspot.com eageageag

    If you actually bothered to watch the video clip I posted you would see that it had less to do with hatin’ the man and more to do with the way in which the mainstream art press mythologized him. Paddy defended Snow, who she thought was getting dissed by the art blogosphere. But the print media was doing the very opposite. I find the work to be completely derivative and I believe that if it was separated from the media creation known as Dash Snow, it would not have garnered any attention. Of course I can’t be sure of any of this. Time will tell. I personally will not be spending any time reevaluating his art. Maybe a handful of grad students will take up that task. And we will see how much media attention, if any, the inevitable memorial retrospective will generate.

  • http://eageageag.blogspot.com eageageag

    If you actually bothered to watch the video clip I posted you would see that it had less to do with hatin’ the man and more to do with the way in which the mainstream art press mythologized him. Paddy defended Snow, who she thought was getting dissed by the art blogosphere. But the print media was doing the very opposite. I find the work to be completely derivative and I believe that if it was separated from the media creation known as Dash Snow, it would not have garnered any attention. Of course I can’t be sure of any of this. Time will tell. I personally will not be spending any time reevaluating his art. Maybe a handful of grad students will take up that task. And we will see how much media attention, if any, the inevitable memorial retrospective will generate.

  • http://eageageag.blogspot.com eageageag

    If you actually bothered to watch the video clip I posted you would see that it had less to do with hatin’ the man and more to do with the way in which the mainstream art press mythologized him. Paddy defended Snow, who she thought was getting dissed by the art blogosphere. But the print media was doing the very opposite. I find the work to be completely derivative and I believe that if it was separated from the media creation known as Dash Snow, it would not have garnered any attention. Of course I can’t be sure of any of this. Time will tell. I personally will not be spending any time reevaluating his art. Maybe a handful of grad students will take up that task. And we will see how much media attention, if any, the inevitable memorial retrospective will generate.

  • http://www.artfagcity.com Art Fag City

    @eageageag There’s no reason to be upset with people for not watching a video that was never properly introduced.

  • http://www.artfagcity.com Art Fag City

    @eageageag There’s no reason to be upset with people for not watching a video that was never properly introduced.

  • http://www.artfagcity.com Art Fag City

    @eageageag There’s no reason to be upset with people for not watching a video that was never properly introduced.

  • http://eageageag.blogspot.com eageageag

    I am not upset about whether or not anyone watched the video I posted the link to here. A few commenters, including AFC, made vague asides about the haters out there, or those who dismiss Snow’s work. I wanted to make it clear that what I found most repugnant about Snow’s death was the mainstream media’s coverage of it. If I ever post a link to a video again I will properly introduce it. Thanks.

  • http://eageageag.blogspot.com eageageag

    I am not upset about whether or not anyone watched the video I posted the link to here. A few commenters, including AFC, made vague asides about the haters out there, or those who dismiss Snow’s work. I wanted to make it clear that what I found most repugnant about Snow’s death was the mainstream media’s coverage of it. If I ever post a link to a video again I will properly introduce it. Thanks.

  • http://www.artfagcity.com Art Fag City

    @eageageag, Don’t deflect. I wasn’t lodging a complaint that you didn’t introduce your video properly. Your comment began with, “If you actually bothered to watch the video clip”, which connotes irritation that people hadn’t watched it. If it wasn’t meant to be interpreted that way, the statement would have read, “The video clip I posted had less to do with hatin’ the man and more to do with the way in which the mainstream art press mythologized him.” If you would like to adjust your comment let me know.

  • http://www.artfagcity.com Art Fag City

    @eageageag, Don’t deflect. I wasn’t lodging a complaint that you didn’t introduce your video properly. Your comment began with, “If you actually bothered to watch the video clip”, which connotes irritation that people hadn’t watched it. If it wasn’t meant to be interpreted that way, the statement would have read, “The video clip I posted had less to do with hatin’ the man and more to do with the way in which the mainstream art press mythologized him.” If you would like to adjust your comment let me know.

  • http://eageageag.blogspot.com eageageag

    It isn’t my site so I will have to live with what I originally posted.

    I would just like to reiterate that the haters or people who don’t like or appreciate Dash Snow’s work are in the minority. The mainstream press portrayed him in their obits in a very positive light that I feel his work did not merit. The art bloggers who beg to differ are in the monority in this case. It isn’t the other way around.

  • http://eageageag.blogspot.com eageageag

    It isn’t my site so I will have to live with what I originally posted.

    I would just like to reiterate that the haters or people who don’t like or appreciate Dash Snow’s work are in the minority. The mainstream press portrayed him in their obits in a very positive light that I feel his work did not merit. The art bloggers who beg to differ are in the monority in this case. It isn’t the other way around.

  • http://davidmcbride.net David

    I spent the last week taking the scenic route from Brooklyn to Denton, TX (the USA can be fascinating and weird, off-interstate), so I wasn’t able to access this even as it was nagging at me. I would rather keep my mouth shut and not revisit a thread that seems as acrimonious as it is stale, but I want to clarify some of my thoughts.

    Candidly, the Dash Snow phenomenon represents the kind of thing that really frustrates me about the art world. But I acknowledge it’s a subjective thing; and I’m prepared to be convinced by compelling arguments to the contrary. I also appreciate your openness to viewing the work anew, in spite of your documented reservations.

    But it’s only mystification to me when someone says: “And Polaroids are hard; you go through a lot of film to arrive at that kind of edit.” Similarly, when someone says “He was one of those really pure souls — he was affected by everything, mentally, he was reacting to things constantly,” Well, that’s an honest enough appreciation of the guy, but it’s far from critical.

    These two quotations represent what seems to be the basis for appreciating Dash Snow’s work in the L article, and that falls short for me.

    But your main problem with my comment centered on my saying that AFC would benefit from this article, and I didn’t address that in my follow-up comment. I didn’t mean it as maliciously as it admittedly sounds. I hold to it that this artist benefits from mythologizing more than anything else. But the words you found most objectionable were meant more benignly, more as a fact, that it’s better to be on the right side of these kinds of myths.* If there’s a certain disappointment that AFC (or I guess you, Paddy, since the original article was in L) has either taken a position that supports this phenomenon, or has attempted but not managed a critical re-assessment of Dash Snow’s work, well I’ll cop to that. But the suggestion, which was present in a certain reading of my initial comment, that you were writing sympathetically in order to garner access or professional perks, rather than from an honest evaluation that you made, was not what I meant when I wrote the comment. My apologies for that.

    Lastly, I watched the video, eageageag, and you use the phrase “talentless asshole”. That’s hating. Though I agree with your last comment.

    *is it too much information to mention two of my heroes who come to mind in this vein, Amy Goodman and Dennis Kucinich? The whole speaking truth to power thing.

  • http://davidmcbride.net David

    I spent the last week taking the scenic route from Brooklyn to Denton, TX (the USA can be fascinating and weird, off-interstate), so I wasn’t able to access this even as it was nagging at me. I would rather keep my mouth shut and not revisit a thread that seems as acrimonious as it is stale, but I want to clarify some of my thoughts.

    Candidly, the Dash Snow phenomenon represents the kind of thing that really frustrates me about the art world. But I acknowledge it’s a subjective thing; and I’m prepared to be convinced by compelling arguments to the contrary. I also appreciate your openness to viewing the work anew, in spite of your documented reservations.

    But it’s only mystification to me when someone says: “And Polaroids are hard; you go through a lot of film to arrive at that kind of edit.” Similarly, when someone says “He was one of those really pure souls — he was affected by everything, mentally, he was reacting to things constantly,” Well, that’s an honest enough appreciation of the guy, but it’s far from critical.

    These two quotations represent what seems to be the basis for appreciating Dash Snow’s work in the L article, and that falls short for me.

    But your main problem with my comment centered on my saying that AFC would benefit from this article, and I didn’t address that in my follow-up comment. I didn’t mean it as maliciously as it admittedly sounds. I hold to it that this artist benefits from mythologizing more than anything else. But the words you found most objectionable were meant more benignly, more as a fact, that it’s better to be on the right side of these kinds of myths.* If there’s a certain disappointment that AFC (or I guess you, Paddy, since the original article was in L) has either taken a position that supports this phenomenon, or has attempted but not managed a critical re-assessment of Dash Snow’s work, well I’ll cop to that. But the suggestion, which was present in a certain reading of my initial comment, that you were writing sympathetically in order to garner access or professional perks, rather than from an honest evaluation that you made, was not what I meant when I wrote the comment. My apologies for that.

    Lastly, I watched the video, eageageag, and you use the phrase “talentless asshole”. That’s hating. Though I agree with your last comment.

    *is it too much information to mention two of my heroes who come to mind in this vein, Amy Goodman and Dennis Kucinich? The whole speaking truth to power thing.

  • http://eageageag.blogspot.com eageageag

    I guess we define ‘truth’ differently David. Also, when it comes to hating, ‘talentless asshole’, is pretty much a term of endearment for me. You haven’t seen me when I’m really in the hating mood.

  • http://eageageag.blogspot.com eageageag

    I guess we define ‘truth’ differently David. Also, when it comes to hating, ‘talentless asshole’, is pretty much a term of endearment for me. You haven’t seen me when I’m really in the hating mood.

  • http://eageageag.blogspot.com eageageag

    One last comment. In the non-art world a person who overdosed on heroin while they were the parent of a one year old child would be considered a selfish, perhaps tragic, but definitely worthless asshole. I know that Snow took some artful polaroids and made some collages which would be approved of by your average MFA program, but I still don’t think this makes him above it all and I certainly don’t think the art is worth a second look. But don’t worry it will get a second and perhaps third look by some sadsack grad students.

  • http://eageageag.blogspot.com eageageag

    One last comment. In the non-art world a person who overdosed on heroin while they were the parent of a one year old child would be considered a selfish, perhaps tragic, but definitely worthless asshole. I know that Snow took some artful polaroids and made some collages which would be approved of by your average MFA program, but I still don’t think this makes him above it all and I certainly don’t think the art is worth a second look. But don’t worry it will get a second and perhaps third look by some sadsack grad students.

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