Nothing in Glebe Place, a leafy street in the heart of Chelsea, indicates that behind the discreet door at Studio 54 is an art gallery. But this is where the dealer Martin Summers is showing ten works by Basquiat that he and his associate Jan Krugier have been amassing over the last five years.
From the moment you walk into the private gallery, lacquered downstairs in black, red and yellow to complement a Rietveld chair, you are struck by an extraordinary 1985 Selfportrait, a two-section work with bottlecaps and a grinning mask; the other works are upstairs, their bold colours and anarchism enhanced in the glass-roofed interior. There is also a major “crucifixion” work, Crisis X, 1982, with a skull inset into a black cross. Prices range from $850,000 to over $3m. Peel Quickly, 1984, sold last night for about £1m (illustrated), while a small portrait painted in a limited palette of red, black and yellow with a yellow crown hovering above the artist’s face, Untitled, 1981, was also purchased on the first night. By appointment only (until 17 November).
Originally appeared in The Art Newspaper as 'Jean-Michel Basquiat'