Richard Hambleton was an artist best known for his dark and mysterious paintings that resembled creepy shadows and ruled New York’s street art scene in the ’80s.
Shadowman is a documentary that details the rise, fall, and subsequent rediscovery of Hambleton, who was one of the founders of the street art movement before succumbing to drugs and homelessness. With Richard Hambleton having recently passed away, the launch of Shadowman has been pushed forward.
Check out a short synopsis of the movie below.
In the 1980s, Richard Hambleton was the SHADOWMAN, a specter in the night who painted hundreds of startling silhouettes on the
walls of lower Manhattan and, along with Keith Haring and Jean-Michel Basquiat, sparked the street art movement.
In the 1990s, succumbing to his addiction, he vanished from the gallery scene. Just as suddenly as he had
appeared, Richard Hambleton disappeared, first on a tour in Europe, then in homeless squalor back in the Lower East Side.
In 2009 Hambleton suddenly resurfaced, supported by two young art dealers working with Giorgio Armani. He had been steadily
working, his talent still intact after years underground. Hambleton started producing larger, more exciting pictures with the same
demonic spirit and speed he’d demonstrated in the 1980s. There were shows, articles, dinners, worldwide fame, and money. But
within a few years, he was alienating his new patrons and was catapulted back to his old life. The film captures this upward and
downward spiral, always focusing on Hambleton’s undaunted will to paint.
The documentary, which was directed by Oren Jacoby, has been nominated for two Tribeca Film Awards and was purchased by Amazon Prime. It will premiere December 1.
- Main & Featured Image: Shadowman / YouTube