Jean Michel Basquiat: Chaotic Genius

Chaotic Genius

We are excited to announce our upcoming exhibition, Chaotic Genius, opening March 12, 2020, showcasing original works on paper and Estate Prints from Jean Michel Basquiat. Please join us Thursday March 12, from 6 – 8 PM.

In this exhibition, we aim to spotlight a body of Basquiat’s work which focuses on his legacy due to a majority of the works being posthumous releases stamped and signed by administrators of the Estate of Jean-Michel Basquiat, in order to the present Gerard Basquiat, Lisane Basquiat and Jeanine Heriveaux, the artist’s father and sisters . These prints were published by the Estate of Jean-Michel Basquiat and never personally handled by the artist himself.

As viewers we can revel in the ambiguity and conjecture surrounding these posthumously released prints released in extremely limited editions and related to widely known original artworks created by Basquiat during his life now in museums and private collections. With a life so dramatically cut short, it is possible that the Estate prints can serve as a nod to those people who were inextricably bound to his life and work.

Wolf Sausage, King Brand, Dog Leg Study and Undiscovered Genius by Jean-Michel Basquiat

Wolf Sausage, King Brand, Dog Leg Study and Undiscovered Genius by Jean-Michel Basquiat

About the Artist

How could a twenty-one year old black Brooklynite manipulate oil and spray paint into the strokes of genius that would create the world’s current highest grossing painting at auction at $110,000,000 USD? Far from an Old Master, Jean-Michel Basquiat is America’s most charismatic painter and up until the present day it’s highest sold. 

His process was a sort of calculated improvisation, like beat writers who composed their work by shredding and reassembling scraps of writing. Basquiat used similar cut up techniques to remix his materials. When he couldn’t afford canvasses, he fashioned them out of discarded wood that he found on the street. He used oil stick, crayons, spray paint, and pencil and pulled quotes from the menus, comic books and textbooks he kept open on the studio floor. He kept these sources open on his studio floor often working on multiple projects at once, pulling in splintered anatomy, reimagined historical scenes, and skulls transplanted from classical still lifes Basquiat repurposed both present day experiences and art history into an inventive visual language. 

Equal parts poet and painter, Basquiat needs no introduction, his creative output and recognition are cemented in history.  He challenged the art world binary of high and low, merging European and “primitive” through a neo-expressionist, painterly style that is nearly impossible to categorize. But, often with iconic figures like this, the passing of time can allow for new interpretations. 

 The exhibition will be on view at Guy Hepner gallery in Chelsea, NYC from March 12th to April 25th, 2020.

For further exhibition details contact info@guyhepner.comcreate new email