After Jean-Michel Basquiat (1960-1988) Flexible, 2016 (published by Flatiron Editions, New York)

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Lot 73
After Jean-Michel Basquiat
(1960-1988)
Flexible, 2016

Sold for £ 94,000 (US$ 103,953) inc. premium
After Jean-Michel Basquiat (1960-1988)
Flexible, 2016
numbered 21/85 in pencil, signed and dated '5/13/16' in pencil on the accompanying certificate of authenticity by Lisane Basquiat and Jeanine Heriveaux, the administrators of the Basquiat Foundation (as issued)
screenprint in colours
153.2 x 115.8cm (60 5/16 x 45 9/16in).
published by Flatiron Editions, New York

Footnotes

  • Flexible was one of several Jean-Michel Basquiat paintings released as editioned screenprints in 2016, under the authority of the artist's sisters and administrators of the Basquiat Foundation.

    As often with the print medium and throughout its history, the edition of a work allows for an image to circulate more widely, reaching many viewers and establishing itself in the visual and cultural landscape over time, thus broadening its impact.

    This is the case here with the screenprint edition of Flexible, based on the 1984 eponymous painting, one that Basquiat had kept for his own personal collection.

    Flexible was indeed important in the artist's oeuvre as the figure is presented very differently from others of his paintings: the character here is that of a commanding royal figure, the black male is represented with attributes of royalty, divinity, and power. He is an heroic figure, testament to Basquiat's confident and forthright approach to both his practice and the reception of his work by the audience at the time.

    Asked once to define his art, Basquiat replied without hesitation: royalty, heroism, and the streets. This work epitomises these attributes in all their strength and stands as one of the most characteristic images in the artist's creative output.

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