The artist and video game designer is believed to have killed himself last week, just after his filmmaker/writer/blogger companion Theresa Duncan took her life in New York City.
In related news, the LAT reports a weird Scientology element to the story:
"They thought Scientologists were really harassing them," [friend and gallery owner Christine Nichols] said. "They would say, 'They are following us, harassing our landlord.' I did not see any evidence of that.
"But it got to be something that was huge to them — a 'You're either with us or against us' thing where if you didn't believe them, you weren't on their side. The story they had woven in paranoia and conspiracies took over part of their lives. A lot of us couldn't understand that acting out."
Two other art world sources corroborated Nichols' characterization but declined to speak on the record out of concern that Blake may still be alive.
Beck was unavailable for comment, but his manager, through a publicist, let it be known that things were "extremely cordial" between the singer and the artist the last time they talked three years ago.A spokesman said the New York Police Department was not investigating any involvement by the Church of Scientology. Karin Pouw, a spokeswoman for the Church of Scientology, denied the allegations, saying, "Never heard of these people. This is completely untrue."
(thanks, TJ Armstrong)
Reader comment: Jon says,
I really wish you'd include a link to a post on Jeff Wells' Rigorous Intuition blog, regarding Theresa Duncan and Jeremy Blake's "suicides". Theresa Duncan herself was an avid reader of Rigourous Intuition, and some of the details surrounding her harrassment were gleaned, seemingly, directly from this blog. It's like a web of intrigue on the world wide web! The post "Imitation of Life" contains more info on the Theresa Duncan/Jeremy Blake suicides.
(thanks, also, vikram)
Update: David Newton was among the BB readers who wrote in to point us to this statement from Beck, published today:
"I am deeply saddened at the news of the loss of Jeremy Blake. I got to work with him back in 2002 on the art for the Sea Change album. His pioneering video paintings had an intelligence and power that seemed to open the door to the possibilities of what the medium could become. I had not heard from him in a few years, so it was heartbreaking to learn of this turn of events. I feel really privileged that I got to collaborate with him, and be a part of the world he created with his work. My condolences go out to his family and friends. We'll be forever in his debt for the stunning images he gave us."