MICHAEL HALSBAND, ANDY WARHOL AND JEAN-MICHEL BASQUIAT #143 NEW YORK CITY, JULY 10, 1985. COURTESY OF THE ARTIST © MICHAEL HALSBAND
On view from April 5th to August 28th at the Fondation Louis Vuitton in Paris is Basquiat x Warhol. Painting Four Hands, a retrospective of the collaborative works of Jean-Michel Basquiat and Andy Warhol. Considered the most important exhibition ever dedicated to this extraordinary collection, Basquiat x Warhol. Painting Four Hands brings together over 300 works and documents, including 80 canvases signed jointly by the two artists.
Between 1984 and 1985, Basquiat and Warhol created about 160 paintings together (hence the four hands reference), including some of the largest works produced during their respective careers. Artist Keith Haring called their collaboration a “conversation occurring through painting, instead of words… two minds merging to create a third distinctive and unique mind.”
TOP, LEFT: JEAN-MICHEL BASQUIAT, ANDY WARHOL, OP OP, 1984-1985, RIGHT: JEAN-MICHEL BASQUIAT, ANDY WARHOL, COLLABORATION NO. 19, 1984-1985. BOTTOM: JEAN-MICHEL BASQUIAT AND ANDY WARHOL, OLYMPIC RINGS, 1985.
“Andy would start one and put something very recognizable on it, or a product logo, and I would sort of deface it. Then I would try to get him to work some more on it, I would try to get him to do at least two things” explained Basquiat. “I drew it first and then I painted it like Jean-Michel. I think those paintings we’re doing together are better when you can’t tell who did which parts” noted Warhol.
One of the most significant of these works is sport themed, boxing specific, and a highlight of the exhibition. Ten Punching Bags (Last Supper) is a series of 10 hanging punching bags, each painted with a varying rendition of Christ’s face from Leonardo Da Vinci’s Last Supper and the words “judge”.
TOP: TEN PUNCHING BAGS (LAST SUPPER), 1985-1986. THE ANDY WARHOL MUSEUM, PITTSBURGH; MIDDLE, LEFT TO RIGHT: JEAN-MICHEL BASQUIAT, UNTITLED (ANDY WARHOL WITH BARBELLS), C. 1984; ANDY WARHOL, JEAN-MICHEL BASQUIAT, 1984; ANDY WARHOL, PORTRAIT OF JEAN-MICHEL BASQUIAT AS DAVID, 1984; BOTTOM: MICHAEL HALSBAND, ANDY WARHOL & JEAN-MICHEL BASQUIAT #1-180 NEW YORK CITY, JULY 10, 1985. 80 GELATIN SILVER PRINTS, PRINTED 2022. COURTESY OF THE ARTIST © MICHAEL HALSBAND
Continuing the boxing theme, on display is the famous “Boxing Gloves” series of Basquiat and Warhol photographed by Michael Halsband. Originally produced for the poster of the Jean-Michel Basquiat and Andy Warhol exhibition in 1985, the famous image of Warhol and Basquiat standing together, arms crossed and wearing boxing gloves, is the poster for this current show as well.
Also featured in the exhibition are individual works by Basquiat and Warhol, as well as works by other contemporary artists that include Keith Haring, Jenny Holzer, and Kenny Scharf to evoke the energy of the New York downtown art scene of the 1980s.
MICHAEL HALSBAND, ANDY WARHOL AND JEAN-MICHEL BASQUIAT #3 NEW YORK CITY, JULY 10, 1985. COURTESY OF THE ARTIST © MICHAEL HALSBAND
ALL PAINTINGS © THE ESTATE OF JEAN-MICHEL BASQUIAT. LICENSED BY ARTESTAR, NEW-YORK. © THE ANDY WARHOL FOUNDATION FOR THE VISUAL ARTS, INC. / LICENSED BY ADAGP, PARIS 2023. © FONDATION LOUIS VUITTON / MARC DOMAGE