As part of the First Friday Night AIR (Arts In Rockland) gallery night Aug. 6, the Strand Theatre, 345 Main St., will present a special one-night-only screening of the brand new documentary film “Jean-Michel Basquiat: The Radiant Child” at 8 p.m. Special guest Michael K. Komanecky, chief curator of the Farnsworth Art Museum, will introduce the film, which will be followed by a brief question and answer session.

This critically acclaimed new film (not to be confused with older films about Basquiat) takes an intimate look at one of the most significant artists of the 20th century. It was honored as an Official Selection at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival and recently has opened nationwide.

The film is centered on a rare and, until now, unreleased interview that director and friend Tamra Davis shot with Basquiat more than 20 years ago. This definitive documentary chronicles the meteoric rise and fall of the young artist. In his short career, Basquiat was a phenomenon. He became notorious for his graffiti art under the moniker Samo in the late 1970s on the Lower East Side scene; sold his first painting to Deborah Harry for $200; and became best friends with Andy Warhol.

Appreciated by both the art cognoscenti and the public, Basquiat was launched into international stardom. However, soon his cult status began to override the art that had made him famous in the first place. He was 25 years old at the height of his career and was dead less than three years later. Today, his canvases sell for more than a million dollars.

With compassion and psychological insight, Davis details the mysteries that surround this charismatic young man, an artist of enormous talent whose fortunes mirrored the rollercoaster quality of the downtown scene he seemed to embody.

For more information, call the Strand at 594-0070 or visit Tickets are $8.50, available at the door the day of the show only.

VillageSoup Art/Entertainment Editor Dagney Ernest can be reached at 207-594-4401 or by e-mail to