A fascinating triptych dedicated to the weird and wonderful works of William S Burroughs, painted by Jean-Michel Basquiat circa 1980, is to auction at Sotheby's on February 12.
The raw canvas, which alludes to a number of literary, alchemical and occult symbols found in Burroughs' fictions, carries a £4.3m-£6.3m ($6.7m-9.9m) estimate ahead of the London sale.
Entitled Five Fish Species, the confrontational piece is dedicated to the late author, and inscribed "He is subject to take the keys back to the shithouse" - a near direct quote from 1961's The Soft Machine, which was published following the groundbreaking release of Burroughs' Naked Lunch.
Previous Basquiat sales have been standout affairs, with an untitled 1981 work making $26.4m in November, the third time that the record for Basquiat's work at auction had been broken in the year.
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