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Basquiat - Essay Example

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Jean-Michele Basquiat is a controversial and intriguing figure who is often identified as the martyr, or James Dean, of the 1980's art world. His brand of Neo-expressionist art work which spawned from his homeless days as a graffiti artist shared a close relationship with Andy Warhol's ideology of 'brandism'…
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Basquiat Essay
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Download file to see previous pages While the novel is key to point out the significance of Basquiat's brand "Broken Heart," the film just shows him plastering it all over anything that inspires him wherever he goes. While the book describes the unique character of many of the odd balls and eccentrics that surround Basquiat, the film relates this to the audience by actually having contemporary actors who they perceive as eccentric and odd in their own right. Actors like Dennis Hopper, Benisio Del Toro, David Bowie, Gary Oldman and Christopher Walken, all have their respective reputations with being connected to drug culture.
Jeffrey Wright's depiction of Basquiat is a perfect example of a life of addiction lived in the new wave art movement of the 1980's. Wright adds certain mannerism to his body language and inflictions in his dialogue that the book can't translate over to the reader. Basquiat is a mysterious and intriguing character and many fans of his work wouldn't mind retracing his life. There is also the aspect of 80's culture in America, which is a blend of art and pop culture that is not often clearly defined through films produced in that era. The decade poses just as much mystery as the life of Basquiat. Hoban's book expresses very well how deeply imbedded Basquiat was into the drug culture. It also keeps a close grasp of the characters that surround Basquiat, allowing for a better case of name recognition. Throughout the film many characters like Gina Cardinale, Bruno Bischofberger, Albert Milo and pretty much anyone else in the movie other than Andy Warhol all get lost and can only be recognized through their personalities, or talent of the particular actor playing them.
-What light did Hoban shed on other artists and art dealers of the 80s and how well did she describe the "glitzy" art world of that era' Cite example from the book illustrate your points. Did the film give more or less insight into the decade' Compare and contrast the reading and the film. Be certain to explain which Explain why or why not.
Hoban's novel does do a good job of expressing the extent of greed and decadence that was being cast upon the artists of the 80's. Ironically enough, the ideology of Andy Warhol and the rest of his entourage of fellow eccentrics called for a revolution of capitalism and marketing in art. Essentially the works of artists like Basquiat and Warhol can be deemed as the start of graphic design as it is known today. The closely knit relationship between art and capitalism that exploded into a cultural movement in the 80's is immediately depicted in Hobman's novel with Basquaits death in the opening of the book when the author says, "His father invited only a few of the artist's friends to the closed-casket funeral at Frank Campbell's; they were outnumbered by the phalanx of art dealers'The eulogy was delivered by Citibank art consultant Jeffrey Deitch, lending the moment an ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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