52 mins + 35 mins extras
Audio languages: English, French
Subtitles: English, French
In the early 80s, a new artistic avant-garde began to sweep across the walls and streets of downtown New York with the emergence of a 15-year-old Brooklyn teenager who would change the course of art history.
Son of a Haitian father and a Puerto Rican mother, Jean-Michel Basquiat became the first great black neo-expressionist painter to initiate Occidental Modern Art to the rest of the world. Working at a dazzling speed, Basquiat accomplished his work in less than 7 years; like a modern age Rimbaud, his work bears all the marks of youth.
Filmmaker Jean-Michel Vecchiet constructs a dramatic narrative invoking a maelstrom of emotions, a whirlwind of images, music and testimonies to examine Basquiat’s journey towards glory – and death. Alternating between interviews, archive footage, period films with friends, photographs, paintings by the artist, negatives and images of the city, Vecchiet’s chronology mirrors the pace and dazzling success of the painter during this electric period in 80s New York.
Extras include a 35-minute film of interviews with Glenn O’Brien, Maripol, Suzanne Mallouk, Agnes B and Enrico Navarra.