One of the unexpected benefits of Bernard Arnault’s new Jean-Michel Basquiat show opening at the Fondation Louis Vuitton in October is the way the show is bringing together a group of far-flung works. Some 120 paintings will be in the show and a number of collectors like Yusaku Maezawa and Laurent Asscher have taken to Instagram to announce the works from their collections that will be making the journey. Curiously, as Carol Vogel reveals in her WSJ magazine preview of the show, Bernard Arnault is going to great lengths to keep his Basquiats anonymous:
Over the past 30 years he has amassed a world-class Basquiat collection. Asked just how big his holdings are, he would only admit that they total more than a dozen works and hang in all his homes, including his apartment in Paris, his house in the south of France and another place in the French countryside.
Arnault is lending a number of his paintings and drawings to the upcoming show at the Fondation Louis Vuitton, although neither he nor anyone involved in the show’s creation will say which ones. Contemporary art experts familiar with Basquiat’s work believe that among the loans from Arnault’s personal collection is the 1982 painting Portrait of the Artist as a Young Derelict. He is said to be lending a number of drawings as well. Arnault was so committed to making this show different from any preceding Basquiat exhibition that he wrote personal notes to collectors asking for loans and allowed the curators free rein to select from his own holdings.
The WSJ story also reveals at least one other new owner of a Basquiat joining the company of Larry Gagosian and Peter Brant, who will host the show at the opening of his Brant Foundation’s New York outpost in the Spring of 2019. Brant is the biggest lender to the Basquiat show:
Fifteen works from his holdings will be in the show, making him its biggest lender. Others contributing works include the philanthropists Lenore and Herbert Schorr, who were some of Basquiat’s earliest collectors; the Los Angeles philanthropists Eli S. and Edythe L. Broad; the Mugrabi family, who are New York–based dealers; the fashion designer Valentino Garavani and his longtime partner, Giancarlo Giammetti; and the Marieluise Hessel Collection at the Center for Curatorial Studies at Bard, Annandale-on-Hudson, New York. Many labels in the show will read “private collection,’’ but according to several contemporary art experts, two of these mystery lenders are the Greek shipping magnate Philip Niarchos and Lorenzo Fertitta, the Las Vegas casino owner.
A New Exhibition in Paris Explores Jean-Michel Basquiat’s Work (WSJ. Magazine)