Jacqueline Monnier wrote in a recent New York Times article that “Asking how much his work is worth is almost like asking how much a van Gogh is worth. It’s almost impossible to put a value on it.”
The simple answer to that question is: it depends. In the case of Basquiat, who died at 27 in 1988, the value of his work has skyrocketed in the last five years, with a main reason being his popularity. He never achieved the stature of Warhol, who lived to be 64 and whose works have also increased in value over time.
The Art Market Predictor website calculates Basquiat’s work at $1.2 million to $1.8 million today if auctioned off, according to CNN Money . This sounds like a lot of money, but in reality it isn’t. Infamous contemporary artists such as Damien Hirst and Jeff Koons make millions per piece, and their pieces are not even sold at auctions (only private sales). These artists are also present in many corporate collections, unlike Basquiat; their prices are continually on the rise because they are seen as investments.”
Jean-Michel Basquiat remains one of the most important figures in contemporary art. His paintings, which first surfaced in the late 1970s and early 1980s, are considered to be some of the most influential works of art ever seen. His work still has a strong effect on modern day artists and is often sold for millions at auctions.
The art world is not known for its transparency, but it’s surprising just how hard it can be to find out what a piece by Jean-Michel Basquiat is currently valued at. There are multiple factors that determine the worth of his pieces, including their condition, size and provenance (the origin as well as history of an object). While this may seem simple enough, there are a number of other factors that affect the price range and value of his pieces on the market today.
Here is a look at some of the prices that have been paid recently for works by Jean-Michel Basquiat:
$110 Million – Untitled , 1982 (oil stick and spray paint on canvas)
This painting was created at the very beginning of Basquiat’s career when he was just 21 years old. It was purchased by Japanese billionaire Yusaku Maezawa for more than $110 million in December
Jean Michel Basquiat’s work was popular among the early art collectors. His paintings were sold for $50,000 in the 1980s and now they are worth around $10 million. How did his popularity grow?
Jean Michel Basquiat’s career started when he was just a teenager. He went to many galleries and sold his paintings for a few hundred dollars. In the 80s, he was accepted by the city’s important galleries, like the Leo Castelli Gallery in 1982.
He was often compared to Picasso and many critics thought that his paintings would be as important as Picasso’s. He made his paintings radiate power, hate, and anger. “I wanted to speak about my generation as clearly and powerfully as possible,” he said about his artworks.
“I hate myself so I hate you too.” This is a quote from Jean Michel Basquiat’s painting ‘The History of the World: Part II’.
His works were often full of rage and sadness. “My work is not about ready-made images,” he said, “but about how I see things.”
His use of color was inventive and powerful. It didn’t copy or imitate any other artists’ style but it was abstract with some African American characteristics
Jean-Michel Basquiat was an American artist, born on December 22, 1960, in Brooklyn, New York. He became famous during the 1980s, and was known for his graffiti work and later as a neo-expressionist painter. Much of his work focused on political and racial issues. His work often centers around the human figure, rendered in large scale paintings.
Toward the end of his life, he started to focus more on drawings and collages when dealing with human figures. During this period, he also created some of his most notable works.
Basquiat’s work is housed in a number of public collections around the world including the Museum of Modern Art in New York City; the Art Institute of Chicago; the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York City; and Tate Modern in London.
Jean-Michel Basquiat was born in Brooklyn in 1960 to a Puerto Rican father and Haitian mother. He lived in Brooklyn until the age of 12, when his family moved to Los Angeles. Basquiat became a graffiti artist as a teenager, and had already sold some of his work by the time he was 18. By 20, his work was showing in New York galleries; by 21, he had his first solo show.
This year marks the 25th anniversary of Basquiat’s death from a heroin overdose at 27. To mark the occasion, the Museum of Modern Art will be hosting an exhibition later this month called “Basquiat: The Unknown Notebooks.” This is just one of several exhibits about Basquiat throughout the year — there’s also an upcoming exhibition at the Dia:Beacon museum in Beacon, N.Y., on display through February 2014; and another exhibition of previously unseen works opening next month at Sotheby’s in New York City.
The anniversary comes amid all this renewed interest, but it also marks another milestone: It has been 25 years since Basquiat’s death, which means that those who are interested have had a quarter-century to sort through his estate — right? Well, maybe not so much:
From a distance, it looked like just another black graffiti tag. But up close I could make out the letter J, the number 2 and a copyright symbol, and I knew it was not just another black graffiti tag. It was art.
My husband and I were visiting Tom Otterness’s “Life Underground” mural in the subway station at 59th Street and Seventh Avenue, a place that is usually teeming with tourists but in the middle of winter was mostly empty. We have been to that station many times, but we had never noticed this particular piece of art, which is tucked away on a part of the wall that’s slightly higher than one’s eye level, and is partially hidden behind an advertisement for Reliable Carriers.
But there it was. The letters JMB and a date (1982) were scrawled by the artist himself in white chalk on an otherwise black wall of the subway tunnel. Some people may have passed right by without noticing anything at all; others might have assumed it was just another one of those endless tags that are everywhere in New York City subways. But for me, the moment was revelatory: I finally understood why my husband gets so excited about what he calls “street art.”
I grew up in rural New Hampshire,