Jean-Michel Basquiat, born in New York in 1960, was an American writer and painter. He is remembered as one of the most important exponents of American graffiti, managing to bring this movement from metropolitan streets to art galleries.
His life and artist career has been very complex but his talent has made him one of the most established geniuses of the past century, making some of the most expensive works that have ever been sold.
From an early age he showed a strong interest in art, probably encouraged by his mother who accompanied him around the museums of the big apple. At 17 he discovered the love for graffiti and from there he began to fill all the walls of Manhattan, signing himself as SAMO, acronym for "Same Ol'Shit" but his artistic turning point came in 1978, when he sold some postcards to Andy Warhol illustrated by him in a Manhattan restaurant. The two discovered they had a common idea of art intended as popular and public, so much so that shortly afterwards he moved to the famous Warhol Factory, learning to perfect his pictorial style. Basquiat's style, absolutely recognizable and unique, is inspired by the subjects from his Caribbean heritage, as the father was Haitian and the mother of Puerto Rican origin. These elements have merged perfectly with other inspirations that derive from African American, African and Aztec cultures with classic themes and contemporary heroes such as athletes and musicians.
In a short time the young artist had a great success, while keeping his distance from the world of the press. After Warhol's death, Basquiat appeared increasingly depressed, so much so that just a year later, in 1988 at the age of 27, he died in his New York loft due to an overdose. In his short career as an artist he has created an invaluable patrimony of masterpieces. His first exhibition dates back to 1980: the Times Square Show and since then his life changed radically. Among his most famous works we remember:
-Irony of the Negro Policeman
-Riding with Death
Despite his young age, Basquiat has left an indelible mark on the artistic world, which is why he is still remembered as "the wild king of the urban jungle".