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24 Nov 9:34am

Basquiat and Warhol’s ‘intimate friendship’ explored in Young Vic drama

The Guardian
Jeremy Pope and Paul Bettany play the art legends in The Collaboration staged by artistic director Kwame Kwei-Armah It promised to be a knockout exhibition, with both artists wearing boxing gloves on the poster. But the eagerly anticipated 1985 show of joint works by old master Andy Warhol and bright new star Jean-Michel Basquiat was thumped by critics when it opened in New York. Now, the story behind the exhibition is being told in a new play at the Young Vic theatre in London. The world premiere of Anthony McCarten’s drama The Collaboration will be staged by the Young Vic’s artistic director, Kwame Kwei-Armah, with Paul Bettany (Wandavision) playing Warhol and Jeremy Pope (One Night in Miami) as Basquiat. Kwei-Armah said the production, which will be designed by Anna Fleischle, “invites us behind the iconography and fame, and inside the intimate friendship between two artists”. The story would ask audiences “to lean in closely and challenge our preconceptions” he added.
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