Basquiat & Relative Value

"I want to make paintings that look as if they were made by a child." - Basquiat

This week a Japanese billionaire spent over 100 million dollars on a Jean-Michel Basquiat painting:  When I heard this news, I immediately thought of scenes from The Radiant Child where Jean-Michel nonchalantly walks around stepping on his paintings, which are strewn about the floor like old newspapers. And he painted with his hands, made art out of broken doors and discarded items that you might think of as garbage. He did not treat his work like precious objects and just seemed compelled to constantly create. I think he made a conscious effort to be innocent in his approach to painting. In Julian Schnabel's biopic about JMB, there is a telling quote, "Do you ask Miles where he got that note from?" - that seems to line up with the man I saw in the documentary; he believed that his job was to create and not observe, analyze, dissect, worry, or obsess.

In contrast, I am participating in a juried exhibition at Piccolo Spoleto in Charleston right now. I was at the opening last night and my wife overheard a local sculptor asking why her piece was not protected behind glass.

Just make art.

Jean-Michel Basquiat: Radiant Child
Starring Jean Michel Basquiat