Sarah Douglas gets in touch with Dash Snow’s friends and gallerists to paint a portrait on NYMag.com of the artist’s struggle with getting clean:
Snow’s relationship with Rivington Arms ended on acrimonious terms, but, says Bent, she ran into the artist in front of Café Mogador with Secret about five weeks ago. “He seemed great and totally clean. He had been in rehab a lot before that, in St. Barts.” Bent’s understanding was that he bad been “down there for quite some time — the whole winter.”
Clarissa Dalrymple, a curator, tastemaker, and downtown personality who was close with Snow, saw him about three weeks ago. “He seemed absolutely terrific, not on drugs at all,” she said.
Reached by coincidence at the Menil Collection in Houston (Snow’s maternal grandmother is a De Menil, connecting him to wealthy art-world royalty), while in Texas to visit artist Mark Flood, Snow’s longtime friend and art dealer Javier Peres said: “People have misunderstood, because we haven’t spoken publicly about a lot of things. He comes from a complicated history. As a result, he dealt with his life as best he could. And fought to survive as long as he could. The things he did to cope with the strain of his own life were often misunderstood as partying.” […]
“I wouldn’t say he didn’t love living, but living for him was difficult,” says Peres, who adds that to his knowledge Snow was alone at the Lafayette House, a hotel in Lower Manhattan, on Monday night. “To simply say he overdosed on drugs is insufficient, because it wasn’t that simple. He died and there were drugs involved. He was complex and astute. He was very sensitive. Although he was only 27, he felt the pain of someone who’d lived a long life.”
Peres says the last time he saw Snow was when he was installing a group exhibition of work by Terence Koh, Jeff Koons, and Mike Kelley at Mary Boone Gallery in early April. “He photographed me and filmed me, we hung out, had dinner, he came to the gallery when I was installing.” Snow brought girlfriend Jade and daughter Secret to the after-party at the Eagle. “He looked amazing,” says Peres. “He had gained 35 pounds. He was at his best. I think his body was as clean as could be, as clean as he had been in quite a while.”
“He seemed very happy and alive and his grandmother Christophe was there and it was celebratory,” says Boone. “I’m happy that’s my memory of him.” It was clear, she says, that Snow “had made changes. He was laughing and smiling and playing with his child and taking photos.”
Although one source, who preferred not to be named, says that Snow may have been avoiding his studio because it brought back bad associations, Peres says he’d been at work on several projects, including work for a presentation for Peres’s gallery at London’s Frieze Art Fair in October — work that, Peres says, may be complete at this point — as well as pieces for an upcoming exhibition at Berlin gallery Contemporary Fine Arts.