Our friend Hamlet Mateo ’96, born in 1973, died on September 23, 2021, of a heart attack after a short stay in the hospital.
Originally from the Dominican Republic, he immigrated to the Bronx in 1987. Hamlet attended Antioch College from 1992 to 1994. He lived in New York until 1998, then in San Francisco until 2004, when he moved to Sonoma County. He developed his craft and deepened his skill along his entire journey.
A true renaissance man, Hamlet sang and enjoyed opera and loved obscure films and literature. He had an eclectic mix of friends. Some knew him as “Mateo de la Rosa,” others as “Hamlet.” He drew constantly, always having a sketch book in his hand.
His considered himself a cinematographer, but he was so much more. We all knew his pen-and-ink drawings which stimulated thought in the viewer; thought that was natural to him but was challenging and controversial to others.
Hamlet was also a performance artist, poet, playwright, and writer of prose. His performance art, whether spontaneous, like an “interpretive dance” on the sidewalk, or a well-choreographed piece at one of his exhibitions, pushed art to the very edge.
Hamlet was predeceased by his father Raphael and his beloved partner Harley. Hamlet is survived by his art, his friends, his mother Belkis, his brother Raphael, sister Sahylis, and nephew and nieces, Danny Jr., Stephanie, Ebony and Nathalie.