Journal 3 - Around the 1980s Basquiat became widely known...

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Stephenie Lai November 6, 2008 ARTS 2050 Journal #3 Jean-Michel Basquiat Jean-Michel Basquiat was born in 1960 in Brooklyn, New York. His mother was Puerto Rican and his father was of Haitian decent. His diverse background encouraged him to study many languages including French, Spanish, and English. At an early age, he showed a great capacity for art. His mother persuaded him to begin drawing and painting. This began Basquiat’s long and successful career as an artist. In 1977, at the age of 17, Basquiat and a friend, Al Diaz, began spray-painting graffiti art on the sides of Manhattan buildings. In 1978, a New York newspaper, the Village Voice, published an article about the pair’s writings on the buildings. Although this stage of his artistic career was relatively short, it was where he began.
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Unformatted text preview: Around the 1980s, Basquiat became widely known for his paintings. His early works were labeled as “primitive” with skeletal structures. His style reflected a somewhat innocent phase of his life. He expressed his obsession with mortality through these paintings. He also included many city-related objects, such as buildings, cars, and police, from his graffiti experience in Manhattan. These works also revealed Basquiat’s interest in his black identity. The last style Basquiat achieved was figurative depictions. He used different symbols in his paintings. He was able to incorporate his love of music, pop-culture, and the history of jazz into his pieces. He also met and later collaborated with Andy Warhol. Basquiat eventually died in 1988 from an over dose of heroin and cocaine....
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