Brace yourself for the first large-scale exhibition in the UK of the work of American artist Jean-Michel Basquiat (1960—1988), one of the most significant painters of the 20th century.
Kicking off today at Barbican Art Gallery and running until 28 January 2018, Basquiat: Boom for Real is an unprecedented exhibition that brings together an outstanding selection of more than 100 works from international museums and private collections for the first time.
Engage in the explosive creativity of Basquiat who came of age in the late 1970s during the post-punk underground art scene in downtown New York, and later worked with Andy Warhol, Keith Haring and Blondie, among others.
His vibrant, raw imagery, abounding with fragments of bold capitalised text, offers insights into both his encyclopaedic interests and his experience as a young black artist with no formal training. Since his tragic death in 1988, Basquiat has had remarkably little exposure in the UK; not a single work of his is held in a public collection.
More than any other exhibition to date, Basquiat: Boom for Real focuses on the artist’s relationship to music, writing, performance, film and television, placing him within the wider cultural context of the time. Paintings, drawings, notebooks and objects are presented alongside rare film, photography, music and archival material, capturing the range and dynamism of Basquiat’s practice over the years.
Basquiat: Boom for Real runs until 28 January 2018 at Barbican Art Gallery. Tickets cost £16 and can be purchased online at barbican.org.uk.
Main image: Edo Bertoglio. Jean-Michel Basquiat wearing an American football helmet, 1981 | Photo: © Edo Bertoglio, courtesy of Maripol. Artwork: © The Estate of Jean-Michel Basquiat. Licensed by Artestar, New York