Swatch has once again outdone itself. Swatch x Jean-Michel Basquiat is the fifth installment of the Swatch Art Journey 2023, honoring the trailblazing New York artist, Jean-Michel Basquiat.
This collection represents the intersection of high art and everyday functionality, offering a unique blend of Basquiat’s revolutionary artistic expressions with the timeless design of Swatch watches.
Embracing the Essence of Basquiat
The new Swatch x Jean-Michel Basquiat collection is inspired by the artist’s groundbreaking work from the early 1980s, an era in which Basquiat’s bold, audacious style challenged the confines of conventional art. The collection features three unique models and a special edition box set, each portraying the powerful imagery and complex codes that characterize Basquiat’s art.
Jeanine Heriveaux from Basquiat Heritage praised the collaboration, saying, “We love Swatch and are looking forward to seeing this selection of artworks transposed into watches as fun as they are colorful. This is one of those classic collaborations that hit the mark for us.“
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Merging Art with Action Sports
The photo campaign for the collection blends Basquiat’s art with contemporary skate and BMX culture. Swatch Proteam athletes, including world champion skateboarder Andy Anderson and nine-time BMX world champion Matthias Dandois, can be seen adorning these unique timepieces, showcasing the synergy between art and action sports.
The collection in details
‘Hollywood Africans’ by Jean-Michel Basquiat
The ‘Hollywood Africans’ watch is a vibrant tribute to Basquiat’s 1983 work of the same name. Its bright yellow dial features a trio of silhouettes representing Basquiat, rapper Rammellzee, and painter Toxic, who were known to have journeyed together from New York. This design intricately intertwines text, images, and abstract symbols, reflecting Basquiat’s signature style.
‘Ishtar’ by Jean-Michel Basquiat
The ‘Ishtar’ watch, named after the Mesopotamian goddess of fertility and war, pays homage to Basquiat’s 1983 painting. With inscriptions and Roman numerals from the original artwork on its black dial, this timepiece captures the power and intensity of Basquiat’s work. The strap features symbols and faces typical of Basquiat’s art.
‘(Untitled)’ by Jean-Michel Basquiat
The ‘(Untitled)’ model showcases the famous three-pronged crown, a common emblem in Basquiat’s art, elegantly framed by the black case, strap, and loop of the watch. An added touch is Basquiat’s signature at the bottom of the strap, further enhancing the watch’s authenticity.
Swatch x Jean-Michel Basquiat Triptych
For the avid collectors, Swatch presents the Swatch x Jean-Michel Basquiat Triptych, a special edition box set featuring three distinct models. These watches boast unique details like two loops, one carrying the iconic crown, the other bearing the artist’s name. Each model’s second hand is colored differently: gold for ‘(Untitled)’, yellow for ‘Ishtar’, and neon pink for ‘Hollywood Africans’.
The Swatch x Jean-Michel Basquiat collection, a timeless tribute to the legendary artist, is now available worldwide. This collaboration beautifully brings to life Basquiat’s fearless spirit and bold compositions, allowing art enthusiasts and watch lovers alike to carry an unique piece that celebrates the union of two artistic worlds.
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