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Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Jean-Michel Basquiat

A few weeks ago, I had a rather uneventful weekend. Well until, my best gal pal called. We went to the local Borders and I found a little gem waiting in the $3.99 bin. I found an up-to-date, accurate biography of the late, Black painter Jean Michel Basquiat. I completed reading it in a day or so.

Artist shown here photographed by the late James Van Der Zee, noted Black American photographer, in the Armani suits that Basquiat wore while painting


Here is an interview with the painter before his untimely death due to a drug overdose in the late 80s. At his time of death, he was a mere 27 years young. His life was varied and interesting though short. He was the boyfriend of Madonna, a sex worker, bisexual, and a punk rocker in addtion to being a painter. He was also a high school drop-out, dated White women exclusively, and was allegedly physically abused as a child. Basquiat, by Phoebe Hoban, is definitely worth reading if you are interested in the life behind the art.



He was also Haitian and Puerto Rican with wild locks sprouting around his very artistic mind! His art now retails for over $10 million a painting. I really like the rugged, raw way he approached sociology and racism in his art in ways I can't accurately articulate. Here is my favorite Basquiat piece:

Click me! Then scroll to the bottom. This is Sophia, Naturally's favorite Basquiat. You likey?

7 comments:

S0uthernGirl said...

It sounds like he lead an interesting life. I'm going to see if I can find this book. Thanks for sharing :)

Brown ButtahFly said...

I think I heard that name before, I'll have to check him out! Take Care

Meikmeika said...

Tag You're It!!!! Sorry...but you always post the most interesting info...

CarmenNC said...

I wrote a short story about Basquiat. He was Blondi's Rapture video.

http://carmenartist.blogspot.com/2007/10/jonathan-paints-red.html

Jennifer said...

Please, who is the author of the biography. I slept on this one.

Amina said...

Okay, does anyone else think he's very high on that interview? He's not very coherent, even though I get the gist of what he's trying to say... and he's got the fiend ichies...that's sad.

Oh, and even though I've heard of him before, I'm not sure I have seen his work..until now. IMHO, its a little scary and dark. What makes it your fav, Sophia?

Naturally Sophia said...

Carmen- i can't believe I missed your poist on basquiat. Nice!

Jen, The author is Phoebe something. Check the post, I included it.


Amina- Thanks for stopping by here. Yes! He was very high. I like this particular painting because it's raw, pop art, and also has an element of the spiritual mixed with something tribal. I think this piece is somehow a self portrait of the artist.