Culture

One of Basquiat’s Largest Pieces Is up for Auction

Lead Photo: Dislplays showing sunglasses and art at the launch of the Jean-Michel Basquiat for Etnia Barcelona Collection on May 12, 2016 in Brooklyn, New York. Photo by Bryan Bedder/Getty Images
Dislplays showing sunglasses and art at the launch of the Jean-Michel Basquiat for Etnia Barcelona Collection on May 12, 2016 in Brooklyn, New York. Photo by Bryan Bedder/Getty Images

On July 2, Phillips—a leading auction house—will host a virtual auction live-streamed from New York titled 20th Century and Contemporary Art Evening Sale. The highlight of the night will be Jean-Michel Basquiat’s Victor 25448, which was a part of his last solo exhibition.Victor 25448 was brought to life in 1987, a year prior to his early death at age 27.

In 2018 alone, the London-born company sold over $900 million in arts and collectibles, which included works from Picasso, Matisse, Kaws and more. Come July, they will sell a series of other pieces in addition to Basquiat’s treasure, including Joan Mitchell’s Noël.

In the past, Basquiat’s works have sold for anywhere from $3 million to $110.5 million.

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Jean-Michel Basquiat

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“All of Basquiat’s work, directly or indirectly, expresses his identity as an Black man in a predominantly white art world,” said Robert Manley, deputy chairman at Phillips, to ArtNews. “Victor 25448 references the brutality that Black people suffer in many forms and is also a reflection of Basquiat himself.” He had a gift for combining “the personal, political, and universal, into one layered and nuanced whole,” Manley said.

At six by eleven feet, the paper on canvas piece in question is one of his largest works. A portion of the proceeds will reportedly go to the Art for Justice Fund.

Victor 25448 is estimated to be worth between $8-10 million. I am now accepting donations of either that amount or the piece itself. If you go with the latter, please remember to label the packaging with ‘Fragile’ and ‘Handle with Care’ stickers.