Brooklyn Nets and the Joe and Clara Tsai Foundation Send 2,400 Nyc Students to Jean-michel Basquiat Exhibit
BROOKLYN – The Brooklyn Nets along with the Joe and Clara Tsai Foundation are sending 2,400 NYC public school students to Jean-Michel Basquiat: King Pleasure©. The educational tours will allow students to experience Jean-Michel’s work in person and learn about his heritage, family, and ties to NYC’s public schools and museums. NYC public school classes are visiting the exhibition beginning this month.
This is not the first time the Nets have worked to highlight Jean-Michel Basquiat’s work and monumental impact. During the 2020-21 school year, the Nets, NYC Dept. Of Education, and the Fund for Public Schools partnered to develop an educational Jean-Michel Basquiat arts program for students, funded by the Joe and Clara Tsai Foundation’s Social Justice Fund.
As part of the program, the NYC DOE’s Office of Arts and Special Projects (OASP) led a team of Brooklyn visual arts teachers in the creation and dissemination of an art unit that is currently being taught to thousands of students across more than 75 schools. During the two-month course, students study various Jean-Michel Basquiat works, learning how art can both serve as a vehicle for communication and to facilitate societal change.
“We are very excited about this initiative from the Nets and the Joe and Clara Tsai Foundation,” said Lisane Basquiat. “We are currently working to create even more educational programming and materials for students and families.”
“When we created the Basquiat educational arts program with the NYC Department of Education in 2021, our main goal was to show students how Basquiat’s art could inspire change, and provide them with an outlet for self-expression,” said Clara Wu Tsai, founder of the Joe and Clara Tsai Foundation. “A central pillar of our foundation’s Social Justice Fund is to explore and expand the intersection of art and social justice. Jean-Michel Basquiat’s work is at the very pinnacle of that intersection and we’re thrilled that with this new effort even more young people across the city will get to experience the power of Basquiat’s work. We are grateful to the Basquiat family for working with us to provide this incredible opportunity for students.”
“The work of artists like Jean-Michel Basquiat is an incredible example to our children of how the arts can be such an impactful vehicle of self-expression, and I’m grateful to the Brooklyn Nets and the Joe and Clara Tsai Foundation for bringing this opportunity to our students,” said Schools Chancellor David C. Banks. “We want our students exploring outside the four walls of their classroom, and we make that possible with partnerships like this.”
In addition to helping launch the Jean-Michel Basquiat educational arts program, last summer, Barclays Center, the Nets’ home arena, also hosted a free-admission art gallery featuring 160 pieces created by Brooklyn middle and high school student participants of the program. The free-admission art gallery is set to return in August 2022 to feature works from this semester’s students. The Nets have also recently honored Jean-Michel’s legacy in other ways, including wearing Basquiat-inspired uniforms for the 2020-21 NBA season.
Jean-Michel Basquiat: King Pleasure© features over 200 never before and rarely seen paintings, drawings and artifacts all from the family’s collection. The exhibition is produced by The Estate of Jean-Michel Basquiat, with Lisane Basquiat and Jeanine Heriveaux serving as executive producers, in collaboration with Ileen Gallagher and ISG Productions Ltd. The family commissioned internationally acclaimed architect David Adjaye to be the exhibition’s designer. The exhibition’s identity has been created by Abbott Miller of visionary design firm Pentagram. Renowned design brand Arper has outfitted the Michael Todd VIP Room Palladium nightclub recreation at the exhibition. The acclaimed accompanying book also titled Jean-Michel Basquiat: King Pleasure© is out now on Rizzoli/Electa. The book was authored by Lisane, Jeanine, and their stepmother Nora Fitzpatrick.
Jean-Michel Basquiat: King Pleasure© is now open in New York City at the landmark Starrett-Lehigh Building located at 601 W. 26th Street in West Chelsea.