The American Pop artist Andy Warhol (1928–87) produced a series of colourful silkscreen prints in 1982 of a Roman-era bronze head of Alexander the Great. These prints were commissioned by Alexander Iolas (1907–87) to correspond with the blockbuster exhibition of ancient art and artefacts The Search for Alexander. In this article we argue that Warho...
Classical antiquity was a significant but overlooked interlocutor in Jean-Michel Basquiat's well-studied conversations with black history and his contemporary world. Basquiat drew on his knowledge of classical antiquity to explore issues of culture and heritage, imperialism, and social exclusion. The interaction of themes from ancient history, black history, and American history in his paintings provided him ways to think about military, political, and cultural imperialism in America's past and present. His references to classical antiquity are part of a larger investigation into the dynamics of power that grows out of his own complex background, experiences, and self-education. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved.