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Jean –Michel Basquiat Essay


Jean –Michel Basquiat was a renowned artist for his excellence artistic work. By the age of twenty seven years, he was well known as a graffiti artist and an innovative painter. He is remembered for his loose and unencumbered painterly graphic style that was commonly linked with street art that greatly became very famous in 1980s. He professionally employed his artistic genius to articulate his subject matter that pertained to race, culture and heritage by the use of imagery, iconography and text.

. Jean-Michel Basquiat was successful to become a great artist at such an early age despite his poor upbringing and education background. His success is attributed to the ability of his mother and teachers to identify his artistic talent at an early age and supported him according. When his mother realized that his son was a very talented artist he took him into Manhattan to see art and then enrolled him as a junior member of Brooklyn Museum of Art where he familiarized himself to various artistic disciplines and practices.

Despite his work being not greatly studied, Basquiat was very talented and purposely assembled through his art a host of desperate traditions, practices and styles to come up with a unique form of visual collage, one originating partly from his urban origin and also from a more distant African –Caribbean heritage (The Art Story Foundation).

Brooklyn-based artist Lorna Simpson is another renowned artist of the 1980s. Her artistic style is demonstrated with her provocative photographic works that are mostly composed of isolated details of human figure or objects with fragments of text. Her artwork addresses issues such as racial, gender, violence and the notions of the body and interpersonal communication and relationships.

Her art reflects back about the slavery era and discrimination of the African-Americans, but in a different perspective that gives them some hope that anything is possible. Her cotemporary imagery involves taking back the power and building a new African –American position or women position for the Americans. Her art evokes some element of sadness, but accompanied by a sense of progress in terms of independence from the chains of memory (The City Review Inc (2007).

Willem de Kooning was another famous American artist whose artistic work is even currently cerebrated. Willem de Kooning artistic work employed various styles at various stages in his life. He started by concentrating in realism and geometric art which he mastered before exploring other alternatives which he equally perfected. He developed his first woman painting in 1950. His paintings were characterized with enlarged body parts such as enlarged breasts which raised a lot of scandal at first.

He also worked on abstract landscapes particularly between 1957 -1961. He received the greatest artistic distinction award in 1964. He was regarded as a leading exponent abstract expressionism. His life featured numerous demonstrations of his artistic works and retrospectives that featured duality of traditional figuration and gestural painting. Willem de Kooning was also known for the action painting that was often referred as gesture abstraction.

This is a style of painting that involves splashing, smearing or spontaneously dribbling paints onto the canvas rather than applying it carefully. The resultant effect emphasized the physical act of painting as being very important element and particularly to the fished work. Later in life he moved from painting and started sculpturing which he also did very effectively (Answer.com 2011).

Reference List

Answer.com (2011).Willem de Kooning. Retrieved from

The Art Story Foundation (2011).Jean –Michel Basquiat. Retrieved from

The City Review Inc (2007). The Photographic and Film/Video Art of Lorna Simpson.

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1. IvyPanda. "Jean –Michel Basquiat." June 5, 2019. https://ivypanda.com/essays/jean-michel-basquiat/.


IvyPanda. "Jean –Michel Basquiat." June 5, 2019. https://ivypanda.com/essays/jean-michel-basquiat/.


IvyPanda. 2019. "Jean –Michel Basquiat." June 5, 2019. https://ivypanda.com/essays/jean-michel-basquiat/.


IvyPanda. (2019) 'Jean –Michel Basquiat'. 5 June.

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