Jean-Michel Basquiat : and the art of storytelling

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Jean-Michel Basquiat : and the art of storytelling

The most complete edition to date The legend of Jean-Michel Basquiat lives on. Synonymous with the New York of the 1980s, his work was a major transition from ambitious and boring modernism to an "anything goes" art in which individual expression reigns supreme. Basquiat first appeared in the late 1970s, in the form of a tag and the name SAMO, signing the caustic words and fragments of poem that he wrote on city walls. He emerged as part of a growing underground scene of visual art and graffiti, hip-hop, post-punk and independent film, destined to join the burgeoning art world.

Gifted with a power and voice of his own, Basquiat broke away from the established milieu and exhibited through the worldwide gallery circuit. Basquiat found his own mode of expression in a style that blended raw forms, words and phrases. His work is inspired by the great names of jazz and hip-hop and alludes to the secrets of history and urban politics. When asked about his subjects, he replied: "royalty, heroism and the street". In 1983 he began collaborating with one of art's most famous stars, Andy Warhol, and in 1985 he did a cover for the New York Times Magazine. When he died at the age of 27, he was recognised as the most talented artist of his time. This book provides an unprecedented insight into Basquiat's art through exceptional reproductions of his most important paintings, drawings and sketches.

The book's large format offers a striking proximity to Basquiat through his mysterious signs and scribbled words, illuminated by an introduction to the artist by editor Hans Werner Holzwarth and an essay on his favourite themes and artistic development by art historian and curator Eleanor Nairne. The life of the artist is traced, year by year, through richly illustrated chapters enriched with Basquiat's own quotations and the critical texts published at the time, allowing a better understanding of his personal experience and the historical context of his work.

Composition1 volume of 498 pages (with 8 fold-outs), colour illustrations.
Dimensions46 x 32 cm
Language(s)French, English and German
ThemePainting and Graphic Arts / Painting / The painters


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