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The Prize

Jean-Michel Basquiat "The moment graffiti met punk." 

  • Dimensions: 46" x 85"
  • Framed
  • Limited Edition 44 of 85 of The OFFS First Record Cover
  • Certificate of Authenticity included
  • Gallery Price: $25,000

A year after the release of "Beat Bop" (Rammellzee, K-Rob) in 1983, Basquiat was involved in another record cover, this time for seminal punk rock outfit "The Offs."

Basquiat illustrated the work for the album cover for his friends, The Offs, a Punk/ Ska band originally from San Francisco. The band moved to New York and soon became a regular act at underground venues such as The Mudd Club and Max's Kansas City, which were popular with artists in the East Village scene.

With the help of their friend Andy Warhol, the band was signed by San Francisco punk label, CD PRESENTS, and their first record was released in 1984. David Ferguson, President of CD PRESENTS, chose to reverse the original image done in blue and black oil stick, to white on black, keeping more in line with the punk sensibility of the times.

In Basquiat's typical Neo-Expressionist, primitive, instructions-infused style, the artist repeats the band's name three times in the composition, placing the album's simple title at the bottom. Using images and symbols found throughout his work during the 1981-1983 period, in The Offs First Record, raw oil stick lines delineating the body extend to form a crown of thorns above the skull. This same imagery is also found in a cycle of totemic figures realized during this early period: perhaps emphasizing the band's role as hero or martyr caught in the travails of the then shifting cultural landscape, as Basquiat too saw his career experiencing this same shifting landscape.

In 1983, he met Andy Warhol, who would come to be a mentor and idol. The two collaborated on a series of paintings before Warhol's death in 1987, followed by Basquiat's own untimely passing a year later.

Donated by
Help a Life Foundation

Item #P75005

  • Certificate of authenticity included.
  • In condition as donated.
  • This item will be shipping from the United States. Shipments outside the U.S. are subject to additional shipping, customs fees and potentially others taxes that are the full responsibility of the winning bidder. These additional costs are not able to be calculated in their entirety.

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