Satur­day Basquiat: Rage To Riches 9pm, BBC Two

The Herald on Sunday - Sunday Herald Life - - TELEVISION & RADIO -

THE in­gen­u­ous, short-lived graf­fiti king of New York’s 1980s Down­town art scene, it has been 29 years since Ju­lian Basquiat died from a drug over­dose. By the time of his death, with the aid of in­flu­en­tial boost­ers, he had be­come a star, but it’s hard to imag­ine he could ever have pre­dicted the kind of prices his works would one day at­tract – this year, one of his 1982 Skull paint­ings sold at Sotheby’s for $110,500,000, a new record for an Amer­i­can artist. This pro­file draws a por­trait of the painter as a young man, a hand­some and charis­matic pres­ence, yet also a frag­ile per­son­al­ity, who grew up sur­rounded by racism, plunged him­self into the funky punk and hip-hop cul­tures of his city as the 1980s dawned, and then was pro­pelled into a dif­fer­ent world of cash, celebrity and drugs. Basquiat’s two sis­ters, Lisane and Jea­nine, who have never be­fore talked about their brother for a TV doc­u­men­tary, con­trib­ute in­ter­views, along­side friends, lovers and fel­low artists.

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