Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Fight Night: Basquiat's The Boxer at Christie's

Basquiat, his painting that is, will be facing a different market than his work did in the 1980s

I remember learning from my brother in the 1990s that Lars Ulrich, the drummer for Metallica, is a collector of art. Thus, it came as no surprise to see him mentioned in the news concerning a piece from his collection. Ulrich plans to place an untitled Basquiat for sale in New York through Christie’s. The untitled paintings, unofficially known as ‘The Boxer’, depicts an African American boxer at the moment of victory. Symbols of death haunt the boxers success-- just as struggles and addictions haunted the relatively short life of Basquiat.
Untitled, (known unofficially as The Boxer) by Basquiat
The piece may very well represent the brutality of the ‘sweet science’ while offering social commentary about race relations at the same time. The painting will likely bring more financial success to Ulrich regardless of the meaning behind the painting. It is estimated that the painting may fetch as much as $16 million at auction. If that happens the sale will break the previous record-- $14 million-- for a Basquiat painting at auction. In the end the late Basquiat's work will land a knockout punch over the market. Place your bets.

Links of Interest:
Metallica Drummer to Sell Basquiat ‘Boxer’ [New York Times]

Take care, Stay true,

Brian Sherwin
Senior Editor


Art News Blog said...

Lars has sold a few important pics over the years. I would like to see his art collection. I can remember he sold other major Basquiats and a big Dubuffet.

Donald Frazell said...

Basquiat was a fraud, a spoiled, soft middle class kid who tried to connnect to the street, not unusual at all among black kids, my own youngest did that and dropped out selling drugs, had to do one of those intervention things or would have been dead by now. He had been one of the top 100 HS basketball player, talented smart, good looking, but lost at heart. Just getting back to real life now.

But that is not art, and seeing his retrospective, at the end he was at best a talented art school student, if art schools were any good at teaching art. Yes its bad Dubuffet, my boxer of Tyson is ten times better, and real to the streets and life Tyson came from. Though done in a preColumbian style of pottery, to bring the God of Death into it. And blood at his feet. Cold hearted, a destroyer. This is a frantic weirdo, not reflective of the "sweet science" that is boxing at all.

Jason said...

Oh Donald Fazell please inform me on what good art is and what bad art is please? And by the way you speak of Basquiat, it appears as though you knew him, which somehow I doubt..Put your judgements aside, not all art teachers are on the same curriculum...