Chaédria LaBouvier raises an interesting conundrum surrounding Jean-Michel Basquiat’s art. In a piece in Apollo magazine ostensibly about the not-very-interesting (and hopelessly muddled) subject of whether a massive record price for Basquiat distorts the art historical estimation of his work, LaBouvier remarks upon the obstacles to good scholarship facing the art historian or cultural critic interested in Basquiat:
- “In off-the-record conversations with senior museum curators and academics, a few have cited the politics and money around Basquiat as a reason for not seriously pursuing his work, or looking at it more critically. There is also a certain amount of academic (and press) territorialism around Basquiat that creates barriers where there should be collaboration.”
One might add to the list, the winnowing number of venues for academic writing about art. Nonetheless, LaBouvier goes on to remind us that Basquiat’s market has grown up without much museum support and in the absence of a strong and active foundation for the artist.
High auction prices and scholarship (Apollo Magazine)