Basquiat The Unknown Notebooks

Jean-Michel Basquiat, 1960-1988

Book - 2015

"Accompanying a major traveling exhibition, this first-ever survey of the rarely seen notebooks of Basquiat features the artist's handwritten notes, poems, and drawings, along with related works on paper and large-scale paintings. With no formal training, Jean-Michel Basquiat (1960-1988) succeeded in developing a new and expressive style to become one of the most influential artists in the postmodern revival of figurative during the 1980s. In a series of notebooks from the early to mid-1980s, never before exhibited, Basquiat combined text and images reflecting his engagement with the countercultures of graffiti and hip-hop in New York City, as well as pop culture and world events. Filled with handwritten texts, poems, pictograms, ...and drawings, many of them iconic images that recur throughout his artwork-teepees, crowns, skeleton-like silhouettes, and grimacing masks-and these notebooks reveal much about the artist's creative process and the importance of the written word in his aesthetic. With over 150 notebook pages and numerous drawings and paintings, this important book sheds new light on Basquiat's career and his critical place in contemporary art history."--

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Location Call Number   Status
2nd Floor 759.13/Basquiat Checked In
New York : Skira Rizzoli in association with the Brooklyn Museum 2015.
Main Author
Jean-Michel Basquiat, 1960-1988 (-)
Other Authors
Henry Louis Gates (writer of added commentary), Franklin Sirmans, Christopher Stackhouse
Item Description
"Published on the occasion of the exhibition Basquiat: The Unknown Notebooks, held at the Brooklyn Museum, April 3-August 23, 2015."
Physical Description
245 pages : illustrations (chiefly color) ; 30 cm
Includes bibliographical references (page 239) and index.
Contents unavailable.
Review by Publisher's Weekly Review

This lavish volume, the companion catalogue to a traveling exhibit, reproduces key pages from Basquiat's notebooks, interspersed with a series of informative essays about how the artist used the written word as a core part of his work. In his short life and career, Basquiat produced a tremendous amount of work, but until now his notebooks have not been made publicly available. To introduce them to the world, historian Henry Louis Gates Jr. provides a superb overview of Basquiat's career and legacy. A sharp essay by artist Christopher Stackhouse looks at Basquiat's language and poetics, and Franklin Sirmans, curator of contemporary art at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, examines the various themes and subjects that appear throughout the notebooks. On each page of the notebooks, the artist reveals himself as someone caught up in the vivacity of living and working and thinking. Basquiat practically jumps off the page. "THEY'LL SEE MY PAPERS WEARING AWAY IN MY FACE," he writes at one point. He makes nods to his friends, writes epic poems, and even coins words ("LEAPSICKNESS"). There are some sketches in the notebooks, but it's clear that they are something beyond sketchbooks or diaries. With vibrant visuals and Basquiat's imaginative text, this book reinvigorates the interest for one of the truly great American artists. 280 illus. (Apr.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

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