One night in the yard of his studio, Jean-Michel meets a tramp. The palisade was therefore useless. It would be more useful as a support for his paintings. He disassembles it and reuses the slats until that source is depleted. It is a simple and clever way to give his work an additional feature of street art. Later in New York he will purchase boards to continue this new practice while including tags therein.
On May 17 in New York, Phillips sells as lot 5 Flexible, acrylic and oilstick 259 x 191 cm painted in Venice in 1984 on horizontally stacked wood.
The larger-than-life African-American character with transparent skin is an alter ego of Jean-Michel. The left forearm is disproportionately lengthened to reach the right hand, forming a flexible frame above the head. The very straight head is proud, expressing the desire for glory of the artist.
Flexible is the masterpiece of this transition phase. A photograph of 1986 shows the artist sitting on a decorated cube with the towering Flexible on the back wall of the workshop. This painting has been preserved until now in his estate by his sisters. The March 28 press release announces an estimate in excess of $ 20M. The low resolution image is shared by WikiArt "for fair fuse" under the copyright of Jean-Michel Basquiat.
SOLD for $ 45M including premium