Jean-Michel Basquiat (after) 1960-1988


Jean-Michel Basquiat was an American artist of Haitian and Puerto Rican descent.  Basquiat first achieved fame as part of SAMO, an informal graffiti duo who wrote enigmatic epigrams in the cultural hotbed of the Lower East Side of Manhattan during the late 1970s.  By the 1980s, his neo-expressionist paintings were being exhibited in galleries and museums internationally.  The Whitney Museum of Art held a retrospective of his art in 1992.  


Basquiat's art focused on dichotomies such as wealth versus poverty, integration versus segregations, and inner versus outer experience.  He approriated poetry, drawing, and paintins, and married text and image, absstraction, figuration and historical information mixed with contemporary critic.  


Jean-Michel Basquiat was born in Brooklyn, New york in 1960.  His mother Mathilde instilled a love for art in her young son by taking him to art museums in Manhattan and enrollling him as a junior member of the Brookyn Museum of Art.  In 1968, at the age of seven, Basquiat was hit by a car while playing out in the street.  While he was recuperating form his injries, his mother brought him a copy of Gray's Anatomy and this book woudl prove to be influential in his future artistic outlook.  Lacking any formal training, Basquiat created highly expressionistic work that mixed graffiti but sadly, he died in 1988 of a heroin overdose.


In 2017, Basquiat painting 'Untitled' sold for $110 Million, becoming the most expensive work by an American Artist.