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Momart is proud to support the first large-scale exhibition in the UK of the work of American artist and pioneering prodigy of the downtown New York art scene Jean-Michel Basquiat.

One of the 20th century's most celebrated artists, Jean-Michel Basquiat came to the media’s attention in 1978 when he teamed up with his classmate Al Diaz to graffiti enigmatic and poetic statements across the city under the collective pseudonym SAMO©. A famously self-thought artist, he soon became a key figure in the underground scene, performing in his experimental band Gray, collaborating with his hero Andy Warhol and being cast in the lead role in the film New York Beat with Blondie’s Debbie Harry.

Basquiat has had remarkably little exposure in the UK. Even though it was the Fruitmarket Gallery in Edinburgh that gave Basquiat his first institutional show in 1984, not a single work of his is held in a UK public collection. There has also, in the 28 years since his death, never been a large-scale exhibition of his work.

Opening in September with over 100 works, most on loan from private collections and many never seen in the UK before, Basquiat: Boom for Real brings together an outstanding selection allowing visitors to understand how Basquiat so quickly won the admiration of fellow artists and critics. Paintings, drawings, notebooks, and objects will be presented alongside rare film, photography, music and archival material, capturing the range and dynamism of the artist’s practice over the years.

The Barbican show will also explore the astonishing range of source material Basquiat used for his works, from bebop jazz to silent films. One of the highlights of the exhibition will be a partial reconstruction of Basquiat’s first body of work, shown in New York / New Wave at P.S.1 in February 1981.

Momart is incredibly proud to be supporting this unique show, providing the UK audience with this rare opportunity to see such an extraordinary group of works in one place.

Basquiat: Boom for Real
Barbican Centre
21 September 2017 - 28 January 2018


Image: Edo Bertoglio. Jean-Michel Basquiat wearing American football helmet Photo: © Edo Bertoglio, courtesy of Maripol. Artwork: © The Estate of Jean-Michel Basquiat. Licensed by Artestar, New York.