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Basquiat Estate Lawyer Orders Website to Remove Nude Photos of Artist

The Basquiat Estate lawyer James P. Cinque reached out to Internet site Animal New York asking it to immediately take down photographs it published in 2014 which depict the artist naked on a mattress, and which were taken by Paige Powell, Basquiat’s ex-girlfriend, reports DNAInfo’s Savannah Cox.

“They are at once vulnerable and trusting images of our love and the daily life of Jean-Michel Basquiat,” said Powell, who had let Suzanne Geiss show the images last year as part of the exhibition “Jean-Michel Basquiat, Reclining Nude.”

“They disparage Basquiat and are prurient in nature,” said the lawyer via an email reproduced in a screenshot on Ratter.com.

“There’s a reason why lawyers are lawyers and not art critics,” said Bucky Turco, the owner of the now-defunct Animal New York site. “The request to remove the photos is absurd. He has no legal standing.”

“Also,” added Turco, “Anyone who uses the word ‘prurient’ should never be taken seriously.”

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