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Basquiat’s ‘Portrait of A-One A.K.A King’ to fetch US$15 million at Phillips

The masterwork by the late Neo-Expressionist master will go under the hammer during the Phillips' Evening Sale of 20th Century & Contemporary Art.

“Portrait of A-One A.K.A. King” was created in 1982 at the apex of Basquiat’s career, when he was producing important works of art, free from the constraints and pressures of gallerists and the art market.

The painting depicts his frequent collaborator and fellow New York graffiti artist A-One standing before a wall covered in tags, as a nod to Basquiat’s community and time as a street artist.

(Related:Want to own art by multi-million-selling Basquiat? Now you can, on boots)

“Portrait of A-One A.K.A. King” also features the artist’s signature crown motif, which became one of the most enduring and recognizable pictorial tropes in Basquiat’s oeuvre.

While the six-foot-by-six-foot work was acquired in 1986 by the Mugrabi family for just $18,150 in a Sotheby’s New York sale, the painting has changed hands once again to the current anonymous seller.Portrait of A-One A.K.A. King by Jean Michel Basquait