Where We Live: Joseph

Welcome to the fifth installment of "Where We Live," a photo essay showing New York artists in their homes. In writing our stories, we realized we wanted to get real. We wanted to give a sense of what it's really like to live these lives. This series features ten different artists across the city and across disciplines. Readers, meet Joseph ...

Name: Joseph Meloy 

Hood: Chelsea 

Discipline: Visual arts 

Tell us about your first experience with art: I was born and raised on the Lower East Side. My earliest memories of art would be ... Seeing murals like Keith Haring's.

You first started making art commercially, like movie posters. How did you transition into paintings and murals?  I started carrying a 4" x 6" pad in my pocket and a black sharpie marker - in 2009, I found myself drawing more than I had in years ... Very quickly, one marker [became five] ... And five became twenty ...

What's important to you in painting  murals on the street? I was born in '82 ... I can remember the end of the 80s. I remember the 90s and, like, it was just a more colorful era as opposed to now which is cleaner and more corporate ... I feel like I try to hold on to some of that bouncier more colorful vibe.

Yeah, your work is incredibly vibrant and colorful and sometimes exact and sometimes all over the place. My paintings don't literally look like the city, but they feel like the city. 

So how did you know this, painting and creating art, was it? When I find myself doing anything else, if I’m going to be blunt, it feels like an absolute waste of my time.

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All photos by Maddy Talias 

All photos by Maddy Talias