Texas Southern University Museum hosting exhibition of world-renowned artist Jean-Michel Basquiat’s earliest works

Posted on Tuesday, December 06, 2022

University Museum hosting "Our Friend, Jean" exhibition tour

The University Museum at Texas Southern is hosting “Our Friend, Jean,” an historic exhibition tour featuring the early works of legendary contemporary artist Jean-Michel Basquiat.

The Bishop Gallery, based in Brooklyn, has partnered with Group Black, the largest collective of Black-owned media to bring the “Our Friend, Jean” exhibition to six HBCU campuses. TSU is the final stop. The tour is accompanied by gallery programming including talks with curators and collectors, along with special immersive experiences designed for students.

“We are honored to host the exhibition tour at the University Museum,” said Dr. Alvia Wardlaw, curator and director of the University Museum. “Jean-Michel Basquiat’s work has impacted generations of artists, art lovers, and collectors alike. To have his work on display on our campus is a priceless opportunity for our entire community to be immersed in and exposed to some of the most important art in the world.”

The exhibition will highlight some of the earliest works of art created by the man widely considered to be America’s most influential artist. These works are on loan from collectors who knew him as friends. The rare photographs included in the exhibition shine a light on Basquiat’s personal life. Friends will share their memories and untold stories about their relationship with Basquiat. More than 20 works will be displayed, including drawings, writings, apparel, and mixed media collages. An original Basquiat work can fetch tens of millions of dollars; one recently set a Christie’s auction record at $110 million.

With the support of sponsors Hennessy and the Thurgood Marshall Foundation, the “Our Friend, Jean” HBCU Tour began at Hampton University in October and finishes at Texas Southern. Hennessy and Thurgood Marshall will also host an exclusive experience celebrating Black Excellence and the legacy of Jean-Michel Basquiat in each tour city.

The exhibition runs through Thursday, December 22. It is free and open to the public. For more information, visit, or call 713-313-7145.

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Last updated: 12/06/2022