“What is keeping you alive?” Legendary NYC artist Dash Snow is looking for an answer. What he is unable to articulate is all too obvious to those who knew and loved the mischievous rebel; His love for creating art, his relationships with friends, and his dedication to the city he grew up in, NYC, all contributed to Snow waking up day after day until one day it was no longer enough. As documented in director Cheryl Dunn’s memoir, Moments Like This Never Last, audiences get an intimate glimpse into the personal life of another artist who left too early.
Dash Snow was born Dashiell Alexander Whitney Snow and had always turned down the inherent privilege that came with being born into a wealthy family. He had nothing against his parents, he wanted to succeed the old-fashioned way: through hard work and stupid luck. Dash was a true hard-hitting school student who spent his life doing stupid things with his equally filthy friends on the streets of New York City and creating magic on his way.
He carried a Polaroid camera everywhere and those pictures became Dash’s legacy. The energy of 2000s NYC – pre-Internet – is captured with such tangible energy, and Cheryl Dunn does an excellent job of bringing Dash’s spirit through his photos, home videos, and interviews with friends and co-workers such as Ryan McGinley and Larry Clark (Kids) .
“Moments like these don’t last”
Unfortunately, there was a stronger love that overtook his passion for art and sobriety for his friend Jade Berreau and their little daughter Secret, and that was drugs. There is an unspoken pressure in the art world that to be successful you have to “be crazy and do a lot of drugs”. Heroin didn’t get widespread in Dash’s life until he got some enthusiasm for his name and that was what killed him in an East Village hotel room at the age of 27.
Dash Snow was a charismatic, intricate, and incredibly talented character who many compared to Basquiat. His signature style of politically charged graffiti and sexually explicit photos (sniffing coke from an erect penis is one of his most notorious) cemented him to a legendary fixture in the post-punk revival art scene.
Moments Like This Never Last pays homage to the fast-paced live lifestyle that Dash has embraced. In a similar way, Cheryl Dunn’s portrayal is a bold love work that makes us feel like we know him personally too. The film, made in collaboration with the VICE studios, also includes music by LCD Soundsystem, Nick Cave with Grinderman, Cat Power, with original music by Brian DeGraw.
Distributed by Utopia Media. Opening this Friday in the Lämmle cinemas and on VOD.