[Jean-Michel Basquiat standing before one of his paintings. Photo by Julio Donoso.]
Jean-Michel Basquiat's work gradually evolved from graffiti to "high art," but without compromising his class-conscious, anti-colonialist, anti-racist ethos or his artistic vision. A meteoric rise to fame in the New York art world brought him into contact with artists and musicians who were eager to associate themselves with this young, dynamic visionary. Collaborations with Warhol and Bowie followed, but because Basquiat's artistic roots were in the NYC graffiti and rap scene, it was perhaps a hip-hop single he produced and did cover art for in 1983 that was closest to his heart. During the last few years of his life, Basquiat struggled with heroin addiction, and died of a heroin overdose in 1988, at the age of 28 years old.
Privacy & Confidentiality StatementLibrary Code of Conduct