“I don’t think about art when I’m working. I try to think about life.”
Jean-Michel Basquiat, born December 22, 1960 in New York City, was an American artist of Haitian and Puerto Rican descent. Basquiat first came to prominence as part of SAMO, a graffiti duo. The pair would write mysterious statements around the Lower East Side of Manhattan during the late 1970s. It was a time when rap, punk, and street art combined into early hip-hop music culture. By the early 1980s, Basquiat made his breakthrough as a solo artist and his paintings were being exhibited in galleries and museums. At 21, Basquiat became the youngest artist to ever take part in documenta. An exhibition of contemporary art which takes place every five years in Kassel, Germany. At 22, he was the youngest to exhibit at the Whitney Biennial in New York.