Although his life was tragically cut short, Jean-Michel Basquiat’s raw, radical paintings made a lasting impact in the art world and beyond. Here, we retrace the life and work of the man who, in just eight years, became a 20th-century icon.
A precocious child
Basquiat was born in Brooklyn, New York, on 22 December 1960, to a Puerto Rican mother and a Haitian father. He was the second of four children; he had two younger sisters, and an older brother who died not long before his birth.