The New York Times reports that the FBI Art Crime Team is "investigating the authenticity of 25 paintings that the Orlando Museum of Art says were created by Basquiat." The works are said to have been painted by Jean-Michel Basquiat in the 1980s, recovered from a storage unit in 2012, and largely exhibited in public only this year.
Doubts first surfaced, the New York Times noted, after the FedEx typeface on the cardboard used in the artworks was dated to after 1994 — six years after the artist’s death. While other questions involving authenticity have emerged, the paintings’ owners and the Orlando museum’s director and chief executive, Aaron De Groft, say the works in the current "Heroes and Monsters" exhibition are nonetheless by Basquiat.
From the Orlando Museum of Art: "Heroes and Monsters presents a rare group of paintings from a private collection that are being shown for the first time at the Orlando Museum of Art. The 25 works were created in 1982 while the artist was living temporarily in Los Angeles, California. This is considered by many to be Basquiat’s best period in his short career. By 1982, he had established his distinctive raw expressionistic style and the symbolic vocabulary that would continue to recur in his work. His paintings often contrasted powerful forces within society and perhaps within himself as seen in Heroes & Monsters: Jean-Michel Basquiat, The Thaddeus Mumford, Jr. Venice Collection."