an exceptional exhibition at the Fondation Louis Vuitton: the New Yorkean painter JEAN-MICHEL BASQUIAT

Until January 2019, the Fondation Louis Vuitton is featuring separate exhibitions of two painters linked by their fascinating intensity and brief, meteoric lives: Egon Schiele and Jean-Michel Basquiat. With a selection of 250 creations selected from their exceptional body of work, the Fondation Louis Vuitton celebrates the itineraries of the two artists who, says Suzanne Pagé, artistic director of the Foundation, “saw themselves as prophets of art and had extravagant virtuosity.” Today we shall talk of Jean-Michel Basquiat and give you appointment in November for Egon Schiele.

bas2The remarkable lives and work of Jean-Michel Basquiat captivated viewers in Europe and the United States throughout the twentieth century. This is the first time that the Fondation Louis Vuitton has hosted an exhibition of this size devoted to a single artist, Jean-Michel Basquiat, whose works figure significantly in the Foundation Collection.

The work of Jean-Michel Basquiat is presented over nearly 2,500 square meters on four levels of the Fondation Louis Vuitton. It covers the painter’s entire career chronologically, focusing on 135 seminal works. The exhibition includes several series that have never before been displayed in Europe, as well as paintings that have rarely been seen since they were first presented during the artist’s lifetime.

bas3• Who is Basquiat
Jean-Michel Basquiat was born on December 22, 1960, in Brooklyn, New York. He first attracted attention for his graffiti under the name "SAMO" in New York City. He lived and worked in New York in the early 1980s, tapping into the vitality of the underground scene and an urban downtown culture, and raising compelling questions about art and identity.

He sold sweatshirts and postcards featuring his artwork on the streets before his painting career took off. Jean-Michel Basquiat was a Neo-Expressionist painter, best known for his primitive style and his collaboration with pop artist Andy Warhol in the mid-1980s.

Basquiat is haunted by the afterlife. Although vibrantly alive, his work is populated by skeletons and skulls, as if he saw each human being as potentially dead.

In less than a decade, he became leading artist at both ends of their century. They shared a similar fate and fortune, defined by a small body of work with an impactful and enduring quality that has rarely been equaled.


His early death in 1988 interrupted a tremendously prolific body of work, done in barely a decade, counting over a thousand paintings and even more drawings.

Now, in the twenty-first century, his breathtaking, youth-driven work has made Jean-Michel Basquiat an “icon” for new generations. Art as a vital necessity is the crucial element that connects these exceptional artworks.

The success of Basquiat near the young people could be symptomatic of an increasing refusal of a cold and conceptual art incompetent to describe concrete concerns.
The young generations prefer a contemporary art who dialogues with his time and speak about reality (Graffiti, Pop culture, etc.)

• How Much Is a Basquiat Painting
During his lifetime, an art loving public that had no problem paying as much as $50,000 for a Basquiat original. However, in 2017 a Japanese billionaire broke a record when he bought Basquiat's “Untitled,” a 1982 painting of a skull, for $110.5 million at a Sotheby’s auction.

• Basquiat's Crown Motif
In his earlier works, Basquiat was known for using a crown motif, which was his way of celebrating black people as majestic royalty. Describing the crown itself in further detail, artist Francesco Clemente posited: "Jean-Michel’s crown has three peaks, for his three royal lineages: the poet, the musician, the great boxing champion. Jean measured his skill against all he deemed strong, without prejudice as to their taste or age."


Fondation Louis Vuitton
Address: 8 avenue du Mahatma Gandhi Paris 16e
Tel: +33 1 40 69 96 00

Head Curator: Suzanne Pagé
Curator: Dieter Buchhart


Photo 1. Jean-Michel Basquiat. Eiffel Tower. Photo : © Fondation Louis Vuitton

Photo 2. La Fondation Louis Vuitton, photo © Fondation Louis Vuitton / Iwan Baan

Photo 3. Jean-Michel Basquiat. Untitled, 1982. Acrylique et crayon gras sur panneaux. 182,8 x 244 cm. Collection particulière © Estate of Jean-Michel Basquiat. Licensed by Artestar, New York.

Photo 4. Jean-Michel Basquiat. Untitled, 1981. Acrylique et crayon gras sur toile. 205,7 x 175,9 cm. Collection Eli et Edythe L. Broad © Estate of Jean-Michel Basquiat. Licensed by Artestar, New York.

Photo : © Douglas M. Parker Studio, Los Angeles

Photo 5. Jean-Michel Basquiat. In Italian, 1983. Acrylique et crayon gras sur toile avec supports en bois et cinq plus petites toiles peintes au feutre. 224,8 × 203,2 cm. Courtesy The Brant Foundation, Greenwich, Connecticut, États-Unis © Estate of Jean-Michel Basquiat. Licensed by Artestar, New York. Photo : © Robert McKeever

Photo 6. Jean-Michel Basquiat. Untitled, 1982. Acrylique, crayon gras et peinture aérosol sur bois. 182,8 x 121,9 cm. Collection particulière © Estate of Jean-Michel Basquiat. Licensed by Artestar, New York.

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Maxime - Art & Culture

Bonjour, my name is Maxime. I obtained my name because my grandmother always took me to Maxime’s in Paris for my birthday, always in the company of her best girlfriend! When I was fourteen years old, I was already enamoured with their Parisian chatter. Now, when with friends, I know everything about the art of invisible make-up and light cocktails! The Parisian really has a very distinct character: she’s surprising and interesting. And she’s so feminine! As for invitations, it a real task: each day Paris offers new exhibitions, previews and vernissages. With a Parisian, you absolutely have to be in the right place at the right time!

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Edita da RIZZOLI, Sophie la Parigina è una guida di stile moderna su PARIGI. Illustrata dai disegni di Alessandra Ceriani, completata da un elenco degli indirizzi preferiti dalla parigina e arricchita di ricette gastronomiche.


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Published by RIZZOLI New York, Sophie the Parisian'sis a modern life style guide about PARIS. Illustrated with color drawings, complemented by a list of Parisians' favorite locations and enriched with gastronomic recipes.

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