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Collaboration ("Plug Pulled on Coma Mom"), 1984—1985

Collaboration (Plug Pulled on Coma Mom) 1984—1985
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Andy Warhol (American, 1928-1987)
Jean-Michel Basquiat (American, 1960-1988)
Collaboration ("Plug Pulled on Coma Mom"), 1984—1985,
acrylic and oil stick on linen
76 x 104 1/8 in. (193 x 264.5 cm.)
The Andy Warhol Museum, Pittsburgh; Founding Collection, Contribution The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc.
© 2012 The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc.
1998.1.485

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Jean-Michel Basquiat (1960–1988) first gained a reputation as a graffiti artist, tagging his alias “SAMO” across Lower Manhattan. He met Warhol in 1982, and the two artists started to collaborate two years later. For Basquiat, it was an opportunity to work alongside an artist he had long admired; for Warhol, it inspired a return to hand-painted headlines and bold color. This large canvas is among their many headline-related collaborations. Warhol would begin the process by painting a headline, which Basquiat painted over, much as a graffitist would edit another’s tag. The two then engaged in a back-and-forth exchange, with Basquiat having the “last word” by adding his signature designs and logos (which, by many accounts, suited both artists). With “Ailing Ali in Fight of Life,” Warhol alluded to the 1968 headline “Andy Warhol Fights for Life” that appeared after he was shot.