in the case of my disappearance…

memorial is up
i taped everything to the wall myself
it wouldn’t say it was cathartic; just overwhelming
come to deitch and contribute something

i keep avoiding writing something about him because it feels too final
i dont want to write my “final thoughts” on him
tying up the loose ends of my feelings, compartmentalizing my response, “putting it all in perspective”

i miss him too much still, i keep thinking i will see him pop up somewhere, as he was want to do. stick his head up the stairwell by my desk and make weird squirrel noises. ring my old buzzer in the middle of the night. throw shit at my old ludlow window. call at 6am fifteen times.

i bought him a used polaroid and a collection of vintage filters for it and sent it to his rehab place back in march. im sure they still have it sitting unopened in their bin for him. he loved these polaroid effects. i wanted to get him the one where you can take two photos that will be superimposed. and the one that does split screen. i gave him my childhood polaroid camera a few years back, a grey and pink one i used from age 7 – 12 or so. it probably lasted him a week before he broke it and it ended up on his huge broken polaroid pile. didnt regret it for a second!

its funny how many thousands and thousands of polaroids he took and how he has only shown such a miniscule fraction of this crazy archive, and this tiny tiny fraction has caused all this hubbub. i cant wait till people get to see all the photos he took. its staggering. i fantazise that once people see what a huge achievement it was that all the mean chatter about him being not a great artist will disappear

chatter like that followed him everywhere. i always said that anyone who hated him was just someone who never met him and it was true. he could charm a scary dude on the subway into letting him take a photo of his crazy skull rings (6 train on way to whitney museum 2 years ago) and he could charm a snarky blogger jerk out of his latest insult. all i do is kind of pity these people they never got to meet or know dash, because that was the best most wonderful gift in the world.

what is dash doing with this fish? where is this photo from? he would always pretend that negative stuff didnt matter but it did hurt his feelings i could tell, that people who didnt know him would hate him for what they thought he was, things that often weren’t even true

its hard as a friend who wanted to defend him, because he was so private he wouldnt want anyone telling the real story, “setting the story straight” whatever that would mean. he hated conflict, he would never let you get a bad word out of your mouth without telling you not to be bitter to be better, stopping you from saying something you regretted. in the part of his life that i knew him at least, he categorically refused to talk shit. even when people were fucked to him.

i met patrick through him at a party; its kind of a blur but i had been going around with dashiell all night, the last place we went was someone named Cat’s house, he told me his friends from texas were coming too and i would like them. Dash and patrick had met when they were teens in Houson, dash had accidentally blown up a car and had to flee the city; pat was someone to go paint with there. patrick and i ended up on a couch together after the rest of the party mysteriously disappeared into a back room. i tried to write the address to deitch projects down on a piece of paper because i knew, through the haze, that i really liked this guy and wanted him to come see me before he left town, but was too fucked up to form the letters; he has it in his wallet still, my sad attempt to write “76 grand street”

dash was the funnnest person to hang out with in the world ever. hands down no contest. if you were with him you would have the night of your life. if you could make it that is, if you could hang in there and keep up. i got to have over 300 nights of my life then, and loved every one. he made you feel like a million bucks, at a party going around and whispering to a few people hey ok you and you and you come. dont tell anyone, leave separately. and youd meet him outside and go somewhere even more exciting, even if it was just to his apartment. the whole party would have followed him all night if he had let them.

im not saying anything important im just thinking of things that have been floating around in my head. ive been trying to remember all the best times, trying to remember him when he was free and not dragged down by addiction and pain, not suffering all the time. seeing him suffering was heartbreaking, unbearable. you couldnt do anything about it; dash’s beauty was that he was truly free and wild and anyone who told him what to do he cast aside, really; you had to love him as he was or he wouldnt let you love him at all

he made you feel like you were family and so you loved him like family. even when you didnt see him for a few weeks, which happened so much when things were bad, you thought about him every day. i did. i would think of him biking to work past the bowery, think of him when i saw a cool photo, saw something interesting on the street, passed a restaurant he liked, heard a funny story i wanted to tell him, anythign i dont know. his presence, his personality was so huge; there wasnt a day for six years or whatever that i didnt think of him somehow

i took this photo
in miami 2005, funnest art show of my life, probably not the best art exhibition though.
we were totally out of control i cant believe we even remembered to make the show

im not mad, i just want him back. there is a note on my desk he left me that says HEY CUTES THE SNOWMAN CAME BY and it made me cry again just thinking there was one day i was out and one day i missed getting to hang out with him. i wanted to know what he would be like at 50, what kind of dad he would become, what kind of artist. i wanted him to come to rome with me this fall and get inspired again to make art, with all his friends from the past and future around, barry, ben jones, chris johanson, i thought it would get him going again and they could support him too

these are just some of the photos jade brought in.
you should come see everything on the walls here
im just so heartbroken. i cant really shape my thoughts
here are a couple more

Author: admin

I am the owner of downtown contemporary art center THE HOLE! I am arts editor at i-D magazine I paint paintings and curate art shows all around

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