Saturday, 20 January 2018

Basquiat inspiration

I first came across Jean Michel Basquiat's work not in a gallery but on film. Although the biopic is flawed in places, it captures the energy he put into his work and the world in which his work came to prominance. Central to the film is the superb performance of Jeffry Wright (it also features David Bowie as Andy Warhol).

Source: IMDB
I've travelled extensively but have rarely come across his work in galleries until a couple of Summers ago in Bilbao where there was an exhibition of his work at the Guggenheim. The Guggenheim Bilbao's website has some great information about his work along with some images of his work.

I almost left it too late to see the exhibition at the Barbican, it's in its final couple of weeks and weekend tickets are already sold out as are a large number of evening tickets so I took advantage of a gap in my calendar, booked an afternoon off work and headed to the exhibition. Even a horrid cough and an oncoming cold weren't going to stop me.

I find his work interesting and inspiring because of the he way he combines text and images, his naive style, he puts himself into his work, literally through self portraits, references to SAMO© or though painting his influences. But above all I think his personality comes through in the work. Here are a couple of my favourites from the exhibition.

Source: Flipped Again
Source: Flickr - Tim Evanson

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