Exhibition of Jean-Michel Basquiat at the Albertina

More+More+ ♦ Published: January 3, 2023; 22:52 ♦ (Vindobona)

ALBERTINA presents "Jean-Michel Basquiat. The Retrospective" the work of Jean-Michel Basquiat for the first time in Austria. An exhibition of Jean-Michel Basquiat at the Albertina lasts only until 08.01. 2023.

The exhibition at the ALBERTINA is the first comprehensive museum retrospective of Jean-Michel Basquiat's extraordinary work in Austria. / Picture: © Wikimedia Commons / Hannes Sallmutter [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/)]

The first great and to this day most famous African-American superstar of art puts an end to minimalism and conceptual art in one fell swoop during his short creative period with concrete poetry and his painting and drawing language influenced by graffiti, cartoons and drawings.

Everything planned and meticulously organized in art is swept away in his work: this too is a symbol of his critique of the existing social order and at the same time a reflection of the scattered, even fragmented perception on the street, of thousands of impressions that rush in on us. Basquiat records what he encounters in the streets of New York: Names and signs, figures and images.

More topical than ever, Basquiat's work remains groundbreaking and visionary to this day. He is as concerned with the African past as he is with the problematic hierarchies in society. His most important theme is the omnipresent racism, which also affects him personally. As an eccentric outsider and exploited superstar of his time, Basquiat asserts himself as one of the most important key figures for contemporary art.

The ALBERTINA shows the exceptional artist for the first time in Austria with a comprehensive retrospective. This exhibition will only run until 08.01.2023.

The exhibition at the ALBERTINA is the first comprehensive museum retrospective of the extraordinary work of Jean-Michel Basquiat in Austria. It presents around 50 major works from renowned public and private collections, provides new insights into Basquiat's unique visual language, and deciphers the content of his artistic ideas.

Jean-Michel Basquiat

At 17, the son of a Haitian and a Puerto Rican woman leaves home. As a graffiti artist, he lives partly on the street. But a rapid ascent soon follows. Basquiat's meteoric career seems like a fast-forward through a sequence-rich film: as the main character, he associates with the most important artists of his time, including musicians such as David Bowie and Madonna. He has an inspiring friendship with Andy Warhol. Basquiat's paintings are in extreme demand and quickly become more expensive. In 1982 he becomes the youngest participant in documenta 7 and the first artist of world fame with Afro-American-Caribbean roots. But rapid success becomes a challenge for him that he cannot withstand for long - in 1988 he dies of a drug overdose.