Renowned American Artist Jean-Michel Basquiat “200 Yen” Masterpiece to Resurface in Museums Soon

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New York, New York, United States, 25th Jun 2024 – A major painting “200 Yen”, by the Renowned American Artist Jean-Michel Basquiat, who rose to success during the 1980s as part of the Neo-expressionism movement to resurface in museums soon.   

About The Painting

Wide-eyed, slack-jawed, spiked hair standing on end, the roughly drawn subject screams at us from the canvas. Incisive, rapid lines lend an urgency to the image. A large swathe of brown paint obscures and gags the mouth, hindering speech. Next to the figure is a rocket, adding to the violence. Here and there, words are scribbled, also hastily. Some are repeated, others crossed out, suggesting thoughts that bubble to the surface of a mind that is racing: “200 YEN”, “TAX FREE”, “SAMO”. These words, in black capital letters on a pale green background that accentuates their visibility, speak of the business of art, against which the subject appears to be foaming at the mouth, teeth bared. Below are two of Basquiat’s signature three-pointed crowns, drawn in black and filled in with yellow. Here we have the clash of two modes of operation that proceed from two dynamics, painting, and writing. The large brush strokes with their blocks of opaque acrylic color contrast with the black oil stick lines that leave the texture of the canvas visible.

While Basquiat’s messages are subliminal when expressed in shape and color, they are more precise in the form of words. The “200” refers to the currency’s value against the dollar in 1982. Basquiat is talking to us about capitalism, US hegemony, the domination of the market and trade wars, summed up by the laconic “TAX FREE” scrawled on the canvas. The more cryptic “SAMO”, the abbreviation of “Same Old Shit”, which appears three times, was Basquiat’s monicker when he was still an anonymous graffiti artist in New York.

About Jean-Michel Basquiat

Born in Brooklyn to a bourgeois family of Haitian and Puerto Rican origin, Jean-Michel Basquiat was a precocious child who gave up formal education at 16 to join New York’s underground as a graffiti artist. Basquiat, a trailblazer of the Neo-expressionism movement during the 1980s, gained acclaim for his radical, expressionistic pieces that passionately called for the recognition of oppressed groups, denouncing racism, colonization, and capitalist domination.

Jean-Michel Basquiat’s meteoric rise to fame in the late 1970s marked him as a leading figure in the East Village art scene. In 2017, his 1982 masterpiece, Untitled’, depicting a black skull with red and yellow sold for a record-breaking auction price of $110.5 million, solidifying Basquiat’s position as one of the most influential American artists. 

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City: New York

State: New York

Country: United States

Release Id: 25062413477

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