Brant Foundation’ Jean-Michel Basquiat Exhibition
The Brant Foundation (421 East 6th Street, New York City) exhibits the private art collection of Peter Brant. It focuses on modern and contemporary art. In addition to its s 7,000 square feet of exhibition space in New York, it has a second location in Greenwich.
In 2019, we visited its exhibit on Jean-Michel Basquiat. Basquiat was a high school dropout and graffiti street artist who turned out neo-expressionist master’s paintings, prints, and sculptures. His studio was on the streets of Lower Manhattan where he started as a graffiti artist.
This exhibit showed 71 of his pieces. This is an extraordinary number given that he died of a heroin overdose at only 27 years of age. Most of the pieces integrate suggestive words and phrases with figurative and abstract images to provide commentary on socio-economic and political issues such as racism and inequality, wealth and poverty and class struggle. Others are homages to some of his black heros including jazz musicians and boxers. This was a wonderful exhibit of a significant portion of the work of an artist whose pieces are rarely seen, and when they are, only one or two at a time.
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