Jean-Michel Basquiat illustration to sell for up to $1.1m in London

An untitled illustration by Jean-Michel Basquiat is valued at £550,000-750,000 ($826,100-1.1m) ahead of a contemporary art day sale at Christie's London on February 12. 

The piece was executed circa 1980-1985, a time when Basquiat was becoming internationally famous.

Basquiat head Christies
Basquiat head Christies

In 1980, his work began to appear in high profile exhibitions around New York and he met Andy Warhol for the first time. 

His fame began to skyrocket, but he found the pressure intolerable and turned to heroin - the drug that would kill him just a few years later in 1988. 

The record for his work stands at $48.8m, set for a painting titled Dustheads in 2013. 
Composition by Nicolas de Stael is another highlight, with an estimate of £250,000-350,000 ($375,500-525,700). 

De Stael (1914-1955) was born in Russia but moved to Brussels in 1914. There he took up a place at the Academie Royale des Beaux-Arts in 1932, where he developed his distinctive, thickly layered style of painting. 

Christie's comments: "Composition, exhibited in a major solo show which travelled from the Grand Palais in Paris to Tate in London in 1981, witnesses not only a moment of technical and compositional experimentation that would go on to inform his mature style, but also the consolidating of de Staël's achievements as a key figure in the post-War art scene."

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Images: Christie's

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