with Jean-Michel Basquiat
In ‘King Pleasure,’ Family Stories and Personal Artifacts Illuminate Basquiat’s Life and Work
An expansive exhibition sprawling through the Starrett-Lehigh Building in Chelsea offers an intimate and holistic glimpse at the life that inspired Jean-Michel Basquiat’s body of work. Opened Saturday, King Pleasure is curated by the artist’s two younger sisters,
David Adjaye. The immersive reproductions provide insight into the places where Basquiat spent much of his time and developed his distinct aesthetic, including his childhood dining room in Boerum Hill, his 57 Great Jones Street studio, and the Michael Todd VIP Room of the Palladium, a beloved night club that commissioned two monumental works.It
Comprised almost entirely of Basquiat works except for Andy Warhol’s silkscreen family portraits, King Pleasure showcases a variety of paintings, early drawings, cartoon sketches, and newsletters the artist made during high school in Brooklyn.
As Robin Pogrebin writes for The New York Times, King Pleasure augments Basquiat’s legacy with objects, videos, and ephemera that create a fuller picture of his short life, which ended with a 1988 overdose at the age of 27. “We wanted people to come in and get the experience of Jean-Michel—the human being, the son, the brother, the cousin,” Heriveaux said in an interview. “To walk people through that in a way that felt right and good to us.” The exhibition also coincides with other U.S.-based shows of his works, including two at The Broad in Los Angeles and the Orlando Museum of Art.
Tickets for King Pleasure are on sale now, and an accompanying monograph featuring interviews with family members and an in-depth consideration of his life is also available this week from Rizzoli Electa.
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The Life and Works of Jean-Michel Basquiat: A Supersized New Book From TASCHEN
A new addition to TASCHEN’s art catalog is a massive 500-page edition that showcases the life and works of Jean-Michel Basquiat. Authored by Eleanor Nairne and edited by Hans Werner Holzwarth, the monograph is an oversized hardcover filled with large-scale reproductions of the artist’s drawings, paintings, and notebook pages. Several essays guide the reader year-by-year through Basquiat’s artistic career, from 1978 to his untimely death in 1988.
One of the most popular Black visual artists of all time, and indisputably one of the most successful artists of his era, Basquiat has been a larger-than-life art icon for over three decades. The new book matches that legacy not only with its physical size (which allows owners to get a closer look at some of his most seminal pieces), but with deep analysis and context of his work and the short 27 years to create it. To add a copy to your personal library, visit Bookshop.
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