Basquiat was a renowned American artist. He possessed Puerto Rican and Haitian origin. Basquiat’s full name is Jean- Michel Basquiat. In the late 1970s, he got fame as a graffiti artist.
He used to paint the epigrams in the streets of Manhattan. In the late 1970s, street art, rap, etc., were considered the hip-hop music culture or the rap music culture.
By looking over the Basquiat quotes, we know that he used to think about life and visualize them through his painting. That’s why his paintings became lively. During creating his artwork, he didn’t think about the art.
If we observe Basquiat’s paintings, we’ll find that it deals with two opposite aspects. His paintings deal with topics like poverty vs. wealth, experience vs. inner, etc.
Top 35 Basquiat quotes :
1. I’m not a real person. I’m a legend. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
2. I had very few friends. There was nobody I could trust. I left home when I was fifteen. I lived in Washington Square Park. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
3. I don’t think about art when I’m working. I try to think about life. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
4. Believe it or not, I can actually draw. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
5. I wanted to be a star, not a gallery mascot. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
6. I like kids’ work more than work by real artists any day. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
7. I was a really lousy artist as a kid. Too abstract expressionist; or I’d draw a big ram’s head, really messy. I’d never win painting contests. I remember losing to a guy who did a perfect Spiderman. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
8. I thought I was going to be a bum the rest of my life. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
9. I had some money, I made the best paintings ever. I was completely reclusive, worked a lot, took a lot of drugs. I was awful to people. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
10. I am not a black artist, I am an artist. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
11. The black person is the protagonist in most of my paintings. I realized that I didn’t see many paintings with black people in them. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
12. I don’t listen to what art critics say. I don’t know anybody who needs a critic to find out what art is. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
13. Some days I can’t get an idea, and I think, ‘Man, I’m just washed up,’ but it’s just a mood. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
14. The more I paint the more I like everything. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
15. I want to make paintings that look as if they were made by a child. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
16. The country makes me more paranoid, you know? I think the crazy people out there are little crazier. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
17. I have a painting where somebody’s holding a chicken, and underneath the chicken is somebody’s head. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
18. Charles Saatchi has never liked my work at all. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
19. I was a cuite kid. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
20. I played a guitar with a file, and a synthesizer. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
21. My basic influence had probably been Peter Max. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
22. For a while, I was drawing on good paper, but now I’ve gone back to the bad stuff. I put matte medium on it. If you put matte medium on it, it seals up, so it doesn’t really matter. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
23. I wanted to build up a name for myself. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
24. Occasionally, when I get mad at a woman, I’ll do some great, awful painting about her. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
25. I start a picture and I finish it. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
26. Since I was seventeen I thought I might be a star. I’d think about all my heroes, Charlie Parker, Jimi Hendrix… I had a romantic feeling about how these people became famous. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
27. There are about 30 words around you all the time, like ‘thread’ or ‘exit.’ – Jean-Michel Basquiat
28. I cross out words so you will see them more; the fact that they are obscured makes you want to read them.– Jean-Michel Basquiat
29. Fire will attract more attention than any other cry for help.– Jean-Michel Basquiat
30. If I’m away from painting for a week, I get bored. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
31. Medicine men live in caves. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
32. I have done only two portraits: one of the artist Francesco Clemente and another of Andy Warhol. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
33. My favorite Twombly is ‘Apollo and the Artist,’ with the big ‘Apollo’ written across it. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
34. I wanted to be a cartoonist when I was young. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
35. Every single line means something. – Jean-Michel Basquiat
The birth year of Basquiat is 1960. He was born in New York. His mother’s name is Matilde Basquiat, and his father’s name is Gerard Basquiat. They had four children, and Jean- Michel Basquiat was the second one. Basquiat got his Haitian origin from his father, and he got his American heritage from his mother.
Basquiat was talented from an early age. During his childhood, he showed his interest in painting. His parents and teachers noticed his abilities. His mother enrolled him in the ‘Brooklyn Museum of Art.’ His mother always encouraged him.
We have previously mentioned that Basquiat learned about reading and writing within the age of four. He joined Saint Ann’s school when he was seven years old. It is an art-oriented school. At the age of only seven, Basquiat and his friend Prozzo wrote a child book.
During his childhood, he was faced with a severe accident. At that time, his mother gave him a copy of Gray’s Anatomy. The book left a significant influence on Basquiat’s artistic mind. Later he was admitted to Saint John’s School.
Jean- Michel Basquiat died at the age of twenty-seven. So his career period is not so long. Basquiat admitted that, in most of his paintings, he used to paint the black people.
Through his artwork, he tried to illustrate the majestic royalty of the black people. People noticed and acknowledged his talent when his art was featured in a group show. The critics highly appreciated his works.
Why should we follow him?
If we go through Basquiat’s biography, we’ll find that he had achieved his reputation as a famous artist at a very early age. When he was twenty years old, his painting was internationally exhibited. He achieved his fame from his neo-expressionist paintings.
He participated in ‘Documenta’ of Kessel at the age of twenty-one. At an early age, he participated here. Because of his talent and hard-working, he was succeeded in achieving success in that short period.
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He was very dedicated to his work. From his quotes, we see that he cannot stay away from his painting even for a week. We should also be dedicated to our work.