Breaking, Graffiti, Turntablism, and B-boy (and girl) culture...
Jean-Michel Basquiat: The Radiant Child
Director Tamra Davis pays homage to her friend in this definitive documentary but also delves into Basquiat as an iconoclast. His dense, bebop-influenced neoexpressionist work emerged while minimalist, conceptual art was the fad; as a successful black artist, he was constantly confronted by racism and misconceptions. Much can be gleaned from insider interviews and archival footage, but it is Basquiat's own words and work that powerfully convey the mystique and allure of both the artist and the man.
Basquiat rose fast, burnt bright, and burnt out so quickly. Many artists took him under their wings, many people used him. His art is fascinating but the person may be more so.
This is so much better than the similar doc I just watched about Pryor, because this movie never makes the mistake of trying to be journalistic. It's personal and has a point of view.
...let his soul run wild.
A straightforward portrait of the artist.
Moving documentary about the brightest star of the 1980s art world. Thrives on Tamra Davis's original interviews with Basquiat, and cavalcade of compelling talking heads to help contextualize his greatness.
- Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry
- Ai Weiwei: The Fake Case
- Antonio Gaudí
- Art & Copy
- Bauhaus: The Face of the Twentieth Century
- Planet B-Boy
- Beat Street
- Exit Through the Gift Shop
- Wild Style
- The Freshest Kids
- A Constant Forge
- A Skin Too Few: The Days of Nick…
- a/k/a Tommy Chong
- Abel Ferrara: Not Guilty
- American Hardcore
Documentaries about artists of all kind.
Not on this list but essential:
Billy Childish Is Dead (2005, Graham Bendel)