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Dec 12 2012
The Artful Lodger Comments (6)

Before she found fame, Madonna found Jean-Michel Basquiat, dating the influential Downtown artist in the early '80s. I always thought they were in some ways an odd couple—I would think Madonna would tire of Basquiat's serious drugging (and maybe she did!), though I guess the enfant terrible aspect was a commonality.

Madonna-with-Jean-Michel--003I was reminded of their affair when reading this fascinating (and rare) interview with art "megadealer" Larry Gagosian, who rose from selling art posters in the street to becoming the go-to guy for some of the most important original works of the past 30 years.

Speaking of an earlier time, he remembers when Basquiat was living with him in L.A. for a year:

"One day Jean-Michel said, 'My girlfriend is coming to stay with me.' I was a little concerned—one too many eggs can spoil an omelet, you know? So I said, 'Well, what's she like?' And he said, 'Her name is Madonna and she's going to be huge.' I'll never forget that he said that. So Madonna came out and stayed for a few months, and we all got along like one big, happy family."

The rest of the piece touches on Basquiat smoking weed on a plane and Gagosian's feelings of entitlement when it comes to cherry-picking his own shows.



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