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Jean-Michel Basquiat was an influential African-American artist who rose to success during the 1980s. Basquiat’s paintings are largely responsible for elevating graffiti to the status of high art.

Video News Story:

SVideo News Story:

Jean Michel Basquiat Documentary
Jean-Michel Basquiat was an influential African-American artist who rose to success during the 1980s. Basquiat’s paintings are largely responsible for elevating graffiti to the status of high art.

Jean-Michel Basquiat spray-painted crowns and scribbled words, referenced everything from his Haitian and Puerto Rican heritage, to political issues, pop-culture icons, and Biblical verse.

Born on December 22, 1960 in Brooklyn, NY, Basquiat never finished high school but developed an appreciation for art as a youth, from his many visits to the Brooklyn Museum of Art with his mother.

His early work consisted of spray painting buildings and trains in downtown New York alongside his friend Al Diaz.

The artist’s tag was the now infamous pseudonym SAMO.

After quickly rising to fame in the early 1980s, Basquiat was befriended by many celebrities and artists, including Andy Warhol, with whom he made several collaborative works.

At only 27, his troubles with fame and drug addiction led to his tragic death from a heroin overdose on August 12, 1988 in New York, NY. 

Comments:

Bradley Posey

This is a fantastic bio of Jean Michel Basquait. Very informative. Unfortunately, the thumbnail photo used for this video features artwork that IS NOT by Basquait. Seems like a poor choice for the thumbnail image.

Jenna G.

I love how he didn't offer an immediate answer to "what makes you angry". he was very introspective in not wanting to say something that would be misunderstood, and to formulate a proper answer, you should never expect a real artist to answer right away.

Raja Parvaiz Raaj

America seems to fail her talented children constantly.

TheCoffeeAddict

So many one moocher after another.  They sucked the life out of him and abused his soft nature.  Vultures. Every last one. Even today, they’re still finding ways to make money off the man’s life.  What more could anyone possibly give?!

Joy Gill

I remember the "Samo" tags all over NY downtown.  He was and will always be an inspiration.  Beautiful soul.

Inazuma Studios

0:40 'I had never seen a black artist with this kind of unbelievable talent and unbelievable charisma...' He hadn't looked hard enough and unfortunately many still don't. We're out there.


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