JEAN MICHEL BASQUIAT BIOGRAPHY
- Jean Michel Basquiat Biography-Born on December 22, 1960. He lived a promising life, his death was on August 12, 1988 documented due to a Heroin overdose. Raised in a house in Brooklyn, his family was middle class. His mother encourages his love for art, taking him to art museums. In 1976, along with his friend, Al Diaz He would scrawl his graffiti on walls and buildings of lower Manhattan. Tagging their work with SAMO, representing him and his friend. His work was recognized and this started a fruitful career, he was first offered a day job by Harvey Russack. After he was invited on talk shows and made promising friendships. He made amazing work. He would explore and display graffiti which personalized a struggle between 2 moods. Segregation and Integration is one example of what mood was portrayed. He would often display these in his work because he witnessed and saw them in real life.
- Basquiat was well aware of the racism black people were facing in America. This made him afraid and paranoid. Although he expressed his struggle in his work.
- One such work is Boxer. It shows an abstract black boxer, arms outstretched, his gloves are the same color as his body, and the drawing of the person shows him to be somewhat having a physically attractive attribute. The boxers’ body is triangular in a way. The intellectuality that Basquiat had was displayed by how the background was white. Although to each their own interpretation, this could represent a black person in triumph with arms raised over the majority of white. This painting was sold for $13.5 Million in 2008.
- He is mentioned in raps and songs, by Kanye West, Rick Ross, Jay-Z, and even Macklemore.
- In his art career, he sold his first paining in in 1981. His type of work was in great demand at the time.
- He died on August 12, 1988 in his loft located in New York. Over 300 people attended his funeral where he was buried in Brooklyn’s Green Wood Cemetery.
- JEAN MICHEL BASQUIAT BIOGRAPHY alone was a revolutionary, his artwork was simple, yet complicated. You could understand the bland message, and then you would find out there is another message inscripted. Some of his works you would not be able to even find a meaning. You might think it is a painting just for the sake of painting, but Basquiat was a young visionary, he was doing things right. He was blossoming in his career when his drug problem started interfering with his life.
- In plenty of his work you can see a black man drawing. More of an abstract drawing. This could in turn, represent how Basquiat viewed racism, that how people who were targeted by racism would be segregated from society. Punished and outcasts. He would draw the figures in a powerless way. Others, like the Boxer, he shows them triumphing like they are rising above others. One paining he has drawn a figure with wings soaring.
- Another part of his genius is displayed in his work. The center image in the piece is a white man. You could see a bit of blonde on the side of his head one eye of the man is normal. The other eye is dark, his outer eye outline with red. Shadows covering it. This was genius symbolism that Basquiat showed in his work. His abstract thinking and putting it to paint was remarkable indeed.
- It was Basquiat’s mother that encouraged him to pursue art. In an early age, his mother frequently took him to New York Art Museums. She was an average artist herself, her love for art and passion drove her to get young Basquiat also interested to pursue art from an early age.
- Basquiat dropped out at the tenth grade. His relationship with his father was not very good at the time, resulting in him being kicked out. Since his parents were divorced, and his mother was later admitted into a mental institution. He was homeless for a while. Struggling to find work.
- It wasn’t until 1981 that Basquiat sold his first painting. This was when he became a full time artist. This was after the fact when he became infamous in the art circles.
- All in all, Basquiat is a man who is still remembered, loved, and still inspiring many talented people today. His work held a deep meaning beneath its symbolism and abstract style. Basquiat passed while he was still young. He felt alone after his close friend died. On top of that he had a drug addiction for years prior, worrying friends and family.
JEAN MICHEL BASQUIAT BIOGRAPHY CONCLUSION
- Basquiat spoke about racism in his work, he put the message blandly for all to see. He made many realize that racism was still true and was still marginalizing the black people of America. Basquiat felt a part of that community, at times he didn’t want to be known as a black artist. He Is quoted saying something along the lines of ‘I am not a black artist, I am an artist’ (Note, not word for word accurate) He had it rough in his teens when he was growing up. He had family problems. Dropped out at grade 10. Kicked out by his father, looking around for work. Then some time later he began to flourish, his work was in demand.
- Basquiat will always be remembered for braving his work with boldness and speaking out the truth even when it was dangerous to do so.