Before there was Banksy, or Blek La Rat, or Dan Witz, or Ron English there was Richard Hambleton the god father of street art. Hambleton who is best known for his “Shadowman” images that were painted all over New York City in the 1980’s is back with a career spanning exhibition. Although Hambleton ran in the same circles as such legends as Keith Haring & Jean-Michel Basquiat, his elusive nature and battles with addiction kept Hambleton’s from obtaining the same sort of mainstream success. Now Hambleton is back with a new exhibition featuring not just his trademark “Shadowman”, but also several other pieces celebrating different motifs such as his “Marlboro Man”. These dark and beautiful new pieces could quiet easily translate into a well deserved renaissance for this highly influential street art innovator.
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Dorian Grey Gallery in conjunction with art collector & friend Robert Murphy have joined forces to curate “Shadows and Blood, Richard Hambleton’s New York”. The exhibition is largely curated by Mr. Murphy featuring pieces from his personal collection, spanning almost 30 years of work by Hambleton.
Dorian Grey Gallery describes the relationship between Murphy & Hambleton, and how this 30+ year friendship came to shape the current exhibition:
It’s import to note how this exhibition is much more than just one man’s focus on a particular artist but more of journey into the relationship of how these two men are closely bound by deep appreciation of art and the period of time from whence it came. Robert first met Richard in 1989 at a gallery on Bond Street as the two were discussing a subway work by Keith Haring. Turns out Bob had studied at SVA (School of Visual Arts) while Haring was an undergraduate, along with pals Kenny Scharf, Jed Garret & Rodney Alan Greenblatt. Together they recalled stories about working with these young artists and even how Basquiat would skulk into SVA to use the studios even though he was not a student. A quick friendship was born and through the following decades Murphy was not only a patron of this pioneering street artist but became a savior during numerous times of personal crisis that Hambleton encountered. At times of homelessness, addictions, and health, scares Robert Murphy was there to help provide everything from financial support to ” Marlboro cigarettes & cheese burgers”.
“Shadow’s & Blood, Richard Hambleton’s New York”, will be on display through November 9th, 2014. The exhibition also features a Hambleton essay by esteemed East Village chronicler Clayton Patterson, and a collaborative work with Staten Island Chris RWK Chillemi. This show is a must see for any art historian or street art fan in general. Highly Recommended!! Viewings are by appointment only. Contact [email protected] for more information.
All Photo’s & Text Copyright 2017 Matthew A. Eller. Follow me on Instagram @ellerlawfirm.