I was unpacking some fab new chairs at the shop when I noticed Russell Crowe idling outside against a lamppost, smoking a cig. After stamping out his butt he came in – it turned out to be Jeremiah Maddock, one of the more intriguing artists this region has spawned in recent years, and someone I hadn’t seen since he moved to Brooklyn in 2009.
Jeremiah is an artist’s artist, and like had inevitably attracted like when he showed at my previous gallery, Mineral. He is well known for his drawings featuring intricate, repetitive patterns seemingly induced by a trance-like concentration; but he also creates nightmarish gestural paintings, urban pentimentos of a half-unveiled spirit world.
A 2012 interview by Aaron Berger in Beautiful Decay magazine described him thus: “Many have spoken of [Maddock] as some sort of ghost- a shadowy figure that passes through bars and cafes with a suitcase full of muted drawings, and an unknown past. This legend surrounding the artist, who lives – most of the time – in New York City, creating richly patterned mixed media works populated with ghoulish creatures and tramps, is likely a product of his obvious lack of desire for external validation. It’s clear that Maddock, who has no personal website, maintains a very pure process; he is interested more in the act of creating – and the motivations behind such an act – than any finished product.”
The man-with-a-suitcase image is true – Jeremiah was “discovered” in NYC when he left a satchel of drawings open at a bar, only to return to find patrons pawing through them, cash in hand. Since then, he has had solo shows in New York, San Francisco, London and beyond; and has worked like mad on projects including wall-size murals, and a commission to have some of his meticulous, hypnotically rhythmic line drawings loomed into a limited edition of very collectible (now sold out) rugs. Last week, he was making a pitstop in Tacoma en route to Costa Rica.
We parked on the fat new chairs with another visitor, Malcolm McLaren, and caught up over glasses of pink wine. Jeremiah forgave the Russell Crowe mis-identity (and the wine), noting that the last time someone mistook him for the actor was on the Lower East Side of Manhattan, when a very large and foreboding figure seemed to be gunning for him on a stoop, only to mutter “Hey Gladiator, what’s next?” as he passed by. Good question… ~Lisa Kinoshita
Moss + Mineral is incredibly pleased to announce a show by Jeremiah Maddock coming in the summer of 2014!