Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Photo(s) de Jour: Jean-Michel Basquiat

Jean-Michel Basquiat (December 22, 1960 – August 12, 1988) was an American artist and the first artist of African descent to become an international art star. His career in art began as a graffiti artist in New York City, and in the 1980s produced Neo-expressionist painting. Basquiat died due to a heroin overdose on August 12, 1988, at the age of 27. - Wikipedia


I feel as though Basquiat challenged us to understand his art.


16 comments:

Don said...

I've never heard of Basquiat, but I've always struggled to understand this type of art. It just appears to be too far out for me to comprehend, I guess.

God bless his soul but judging from the art and heroin overdose, I'm hardly surprised.

Moanerplicity said...

That was a strange time in downtown NY art circles. There was a blatant vacancy in the art world where Af-Am artists were virtually ignored & even great artists of color were considered non-entities. Basquiat entered the scene at just the right time, right moment, w/ the right talent, the right attitude, right story & he was suddenly elevated into Greatness.

Personally, I felt challenged by his work, & somewhat confused by the acclaim b/c there were some seriously gifted graffiti artists doing stellar work (AMAZING murals!) at the same time, & NOT getting any shine. His work was, for the most part, primitive. But for whatever reasons, the critics hailed & embraced him.

Sad that he O.D.'d when his career was so red-hot. Who knows what he might have created had he put down that damned needle.

One.

Jason said...

I just saw a great documentary about Basquiat titled "The Radiant Child". It was entertaining and informative. It has some rare footage of Basquiat talking and laughing and it did a decent job of explaining Basquiat's appeal and his ascension to being the abstract God of the NYC underground art scene.

I saw it at the independent movie house here in D.C., It should be released on DVD in the near future.

JStar said...

Very intresting...

Chic Noir said...

IIRC, there is a exhibition of his work somewhere right now but I can remember the name of the gallery or museum.


Are you a runner? see you have track and field links

? said...

I've always loved Basquiat. The move on his life was quite good too.

Val said...

@Don

He's saying a lot. I think it takes some serious study to get what he's saying.

Val said...

@Lin

I think he got his chance because Andy Warhol liked his work.

It is sad the he's gone.

Val said...

@Jason

Thanks very much for the info about the film. I'll def look for that.

Val said...

@Chic Noir

I love to see an exhibit of his art.

I ran in school. Now I'm just a huge track fan. Are you?

Val said...

@?

Yeah, that was a great film. Jeffrey Wright was wonderful. In fact that was the first time I became aware of both Basquiat and Jeffrey Wright.

Val said...

@JStar

Very interesting indeed.

Nelesc said...

I LOVE BASQUIAT!!!! I did my undergrad in Art History and it was so refreshing to learn about a brother in the art world at that time. I love grafitti and like the way he infused that art form with abstraction. His work has a lot of angst in it, it's urban, it's deep. i think he was fighting some demons and it showed up in his work. His death was a tragic loss.

Val said...

@Nellie

He was def fighting demons, especially toward the end.

I miss graffiti as art. I still see graffiti but it's just not the same as it used to be.

uglyblackjohn said...

Ahhh Basquiat...
The connection with Warhol helped, as did the NYC (and international) scene at the time.
As did the emergence of Hip Hop and it's surrounding culture and attitude.
'Radiant Child'? Wasn't that also the title of a Keith Haring piece?
Haring, Scharf, Longo, Salle, Schnabel and Basquiat were among the titans of the 80's NY art world.

Val, you went to Fairfax.
Do you remember Billy Shire's La Luna De Jesus galery on Melrose?
That place had (has) a lot of challenging art.
(Mr. Shire was also a member of the Memphis group which produced avant-garde funishings.)

I liked Donde White's (He did the Buffalo Gals' logo for Malcolm McLaren, did the work in 'Wild Style' and other movies.) graffiti better.

But yeah...
Imma huge Basquiat fan.

uglyblackjohn said...

Whoops, meant to say, "Not to be confused with Peter Shire of Memphis.)

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Soldier Of Love

I've lost the use of my heart
But I'm still alive
Still looking for the life
The endless pool on the other side
It's a wild wild west
I'm doing my best

I'm at the borderline of my faith,
I'm at the hinterland of my devotion
In the frontline of this battle of mine
But I'm still alive

I'm a soldier of love.
Every day and night
I'm soldier of love
All the days of my life

I've been torn up inside (oh!)
I've been left behind (oh!)
So I ride
I have the will to survive

In the wild wild west,
Trying my hardest
Doing my best
To stay alive

I am love's soldier!

I wait for the sound
(oooh oohhh)

I know that love will come (that love will come)
Turn it all around

I'm a soldier of love (soldier of love)
Every day and night
I'm a soldier of love
All the days of my life

I am lost
But I don't doubt (oh!)
So I ride
I have the will to survive

In the wild wild west,
Trying my hardest
Doing my best
To stay alive

I am love's soldier!

I wait for the sound

I know that love will come
I know that love will come
Turn it all around

I'm a soldier of love
I'm a soldier

Still waiting for love to come
Turn it all around
(4x)

I'm a soldier of love
I'm a soldier

Still waiting for love to come
Turn it all around
(3x)

Still waiting for love to come

Miss Keri Baby!

Tracee!

Solange!

Solange!
The only interesting Knowles

un·for·get·ta·ble: Earning a permanent place in the memory; memorable: an unforgettable experience.

Alicia says...

Rest in Peace Mitrice

Rest in Peace Mitrice
Mitrice Richardson