Jean-Michel Basquiat: Works from the Collection of Alexis Adler
24 February 2014
In the late 1970’s, behind the walls of Jean-Michel Basquiat’s first fixed address with his then-girlfriend Alexis Adler, he began transforming their apartment into an evolving live-in installation. Having bought the apartment after Basquiat’s death in 1988, much of Adler’s collection will now be unveiled by Christie’s at the Rockefeller Center from 1 to 28 March 2014.
Following a sale at Christie’s in 2008, which saw the artist’s Untitled (Boxer) sell to an anonymous bidder for US $13,522,500, this March is set to be a phenomenally high-grossing affair, and more importantly, a priceless opportunity to see intimate, never-before-seen pieces from a tragically short-lived but notorious American artist. The 50 works on show will include a mural that reads, ‘Olive Oyl’, the word ‘Milk’ written on a radiator as well as a stash of his notebooks, painted clothes, photographs, drawings and post cards. Perhaps the most fascinating aspect is in the material that will support the works of art, for example, a script for a play written by Basquiat and some 50 rolls of 35mm film that document the artist at work.
As a busy working Biologist, Adler has waited 30 years to make the sale but she has commented that ‘now is the time’. She has said that it is a ‘damn shame’ that until now her cats have been the main witnesses to the exquisite work. The sale will without a doubt go down in history, but for those not lucky enough to be in New York there will still be an opportunity to stake your claim on the dedicated online-sale from 3 to 17 March.