A rare collection of paintings and drawings by Jean-Michel Basquiat will be up for auction this month. The curated capsule containing nine works from the iconic artist is from the personal collection of Johnny Depp. Despite the controversy surrounding his personal life, Depp is moving forward with the selling of his prized collection at Christie's Auction House.
The actor began collecting the pieces in the early 1990s. Most of them are exclusively from 1981, a year that marked the height of Basquiat's career. The works were assembled over the course of more than 25 years, and have been exhibited in many of the artist’s most important retrospectives.
Basquiat's painting Pork, which was scrawled on a wooden door, will be included in the collection. "Like the walls, billboards, windows and even refrigerators that functioned as his original canvases, the door—complete with original hinges and panes of glass—represents a contemporary architectural ruin, infused with the electrifying spirit of 1980s downtown Manhattan," wrote Christie's in a press release.
Also featured in the auction is Self Portrait, which is a work comprised of three hinged wooden panels, meant to represent the form of a religious altarpiece. It features two black silhouettes of Basquiat's head against an off-white surface. The piece is estimated to go for around $1,500,000.
"Nothing can replace the warmth and immediacy of Basquiat's poetry, or the absolute questions and truths that he delivered," Depp was quoted saying in the book Jean Michel-Basquiat, according to Christie's. "The beautiful and disturbing music of his paintings, the cacophony of his silence that attacks our senses, will live far beyond our breath."
The Post War and Contemporary Art Auctions in London that will include the Basquiat works will take place on June 29 and 30.