TORRICK ABLACK aka Toxic is an american artist. He was born in the South Bronx in a family of Caribbean and Indian origins. Toxic grew up in the Bronx. He began tagging New York City subway trains and walls at the age of thirteen with his friends A-One and Koor.
Member of Rammellzee’s TMK (Tag Master Killers) letter ‘Army’, he was rather a brother than a companion of Jean-Michel Basquiat.
The trio, travelled to Los Angeles in 1982, and dubbed themselves the Hollywood Africans as a social and political comment of African Americans stereotypes in the entertainment industry. The Hollywood African trio features in two paintings of Basquiat. The first dated 1983 Hollywood Africans in Front of the Chinese Theater with Footprints of Movie Stars. The second one Hollywood Africans, now part of the collection of Whitney Museum of American Art in New York.
Torrick’s portrait or name features also in other Jean-Michel Basquiat’s paintings; the full-lenght portrait, Toxic, dated 1984, Luna Park, All colored cast I .
Between 1982 and 1985, Toxic has regular shows in New York at the Fashion Moda Gallery and at Sidney Janis. At the end of the 80’s he moves to Italy. A few years later settles in France.
In the past 30 years he exhibited almost everywhere in Europe.
Toxic’s talent and achievement never fail to be recognized by an informed audience.
In 2006, with the Graffiti Basics exhibition, the Brooklyn Museum pays a tribute to the forerunners of the graffiti movement and establishes Toxic as a major artist alongside other legends, like NOC 167 and Bear 167.Toxic is today, together with a few others witnesses, one of the last survivors of a powerful and hugely influential group among the 80’s graffiti scene. Toxic’s abstract pictorial space is particularly sophisticated. Colors, symbols and cabalist references, find their own place next to personal memories.
Toxic’s works can be seen in International museums and are part of private collections worldwide. He currently lives and works in Paris.
Original recording from Radio show hosted by Isaac Jackson on WBAI NYC, 1982, w/Jean Michel Basquiat, Ramm-ell-zee, A-One, Toxic C-1 & General Arbitrator Koor.