January 14


Wiki Kehinde Wiley Bio, Age, Gay, Quotes, Paintings and Net Worth

Kehinde Wiley Biography

Kehinde Wiley is a Nigerian-American portrait painter based in New York City, who is known for his highly naturalistic paintings of black people. He was commissioned in 2017 to paint a portrait of former President Barack Obama for the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery, which has portraits of all the US presidents.


He was commissioned in 2017 to paint a portrait of President Barack Obama for the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery, which has portraits of all the US presidents. Wiley’s portrait of Obama was unveiled on February 12, 2018. He and Amy Sherald, whose portrait of former First Lady Michelle Obama was simultaneously unveiled, are the first black artists to paint official portraits of the president or First Lady for the National Portrait Gallery. Some observers criticized the selection of Wiley for the commission because he had earlier produced two painting variations of Judith Beheading Holofernes, in which he depicts African-American women holding the severed heads of white women. Wiley said that this is a “play on the ‘kill whitey’ thing”

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Kehinde Wiley Age

Kehinde Wiley was born in Los Angeles, California on  February 28, 1977. He is currently 42 years old as of 2019.

Kehinde Wiley Early life|Education

His father is Yoruba from Nigeria, and his mother is African American. Wiley has a twin brother. When Kehinde Wiley was a child, his mother supported his interest in art and enrolled him in after-school art classes. At the age of 11, he spent a short time at an art school in Russia. He continued with other classes in the US.

The twins were raised by their mother; their father had returned to Nigeria. He traveled to Nigeria at the age of 20 to meet his father and explore his family roots there. Wiley earned his BFA from the San Francisco Art Institute in 1999 and his MFA from Yale University, School of Art in 2001. Wiley became an artist-in-residence at the Studio Museum in Harlem.

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Kehinde Wiley Gay

Kehinde Wiley has kept his personal life private but acknowledges that he identifies as a gay man. Between 2014 and 2018, he created Black Rock Senegal in Yoff, an artist residence designed by Senegalese architect Abib Djenne.

Kehinde Wiley Career

Kehinde Wiley often references Old Masters paintings for the pose of a figure. Wiley’s paintings often blur the boundaries between traditional and contemporary modes of representation. Rendering his figures in a realistic mode—while making references to specific Old Master paintings Wiley creates a fusion of period styles and influences, ranging from French Rococo, Islamic architecture, and West African textile design, to urban hip hop and the “Sea Foam Green” of a Martha Stewart Interiors color swatch.

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Kehinde  Wiley depicts his slightly larger than life-size figures in a heroic manner, giving them poses that connote power and spiritual awakening. Wiley’s portrayal of masculinity is filtered through these poses of power and spirituality.

His portraits are based on photographs of young men whom Wiley sees on the street. He has painted men from Harlem’s 125th Street, as well as the South Central Los Angeles neighborhood where he was born. Dressed in street clothes, his models were asked to assume poses from the paintings of Renaissance masters, such as Tiziano Vecellio and Giovanni Battista Tiepolo. Wiley describes his approach as “interrogating the notion of the master painter, at once critical and complicit”.

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His figurative paintings “quote historical sources and position young black men within that field of power”. In this manner, his paintings fuse history and style in a unique and contemporary manner. His art has been described as having homoerotic qualities. Wiley has used a sperm motif as symbolic of masculinity and gender. Wiley had a retrospective in 2016 at the Seattle Art Museum. In May 2017, he had an exhibit, Trickster, at the Sean Kelly Gallery, New York City. The exhibit featured 11 paintings depicting contemporary black artists.

Wiley opened a studio in Beijing, China, in 2006 to use several helpers to do brushstrokes for his paintings. Initially, outsourcing work to China had been done to cut costs but by 2012, Wiley told New York magazine that low costs were no longer the reason.

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After visiting Richmond, Virginia, Wiley became interested in the Confederate monuments on Monument Avenue and the idea of the Lost Cause of the Confederacy existing within a modern “hipster” town. In response to the monuments, Wiley decided to create Rumors of War, a thirty-foot tall statue of a young, black man modeled on Monument Avenue’s statue of J. E. B. Stuart. Rumors of War will be unveiled in Times Square before being moved to the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, a mile away from the J. E. B. Stuart statue which inspired it.

Kehinde Wiley Paintings

In 2012, Kehinde Wiley who is known for painting men exhibited work in Beijing including multiple paintings of women. New York Magazine described his variation of the painting of Judith Beheading Holofernes as standing out among the others. It described the painting as showing “a tall, elegant black woman in a long blue dress. On one hand, she holds a knife.

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On the other, a cleanly severed brunette female head”. Kehinde Wiley said about his work: “It’s sort of a play on the ‘kill whitey’ thing”. Wiley exhibited a second similar painting, also in 2012. It also features a black woman holding a knife in one hand and a white female severed head in the other hand. The paintings are based on the Biblical story of Judith beheading Holofernes, a story of a Jewish woman beheading a male enemy general. Wiley portrayed Judith as a modern-day black woman and the beheading victim as a white woman

Kehinde Wiley Quotes

  • “Portraits are about revealing aspects of an individual.”
  • “The beauty of art is that it allows you to slow down, and for a moment, things that once seemed unfamiliar become precious to you.”
  • “Art is about changing what we see in our everyday lives and representing it in such a way that it gives us hope.”
  • “If you look at the paintings that I love in art history, these are the paintings where great, powerful men are being celebrated on the big walls of museums throughout the world. What feels really strange is not to be able to see a reflection of me in that world.”
  • “There’s something really cool about taking oily colored paste and pushing it around with these hairy sticks and making something that looks like you. That’s the magic of painting.”
  • “The reality of Barack Obama being the president of the United States – quite possibly the most powerful nation in the world – means that the image of power is completely new for an entire generation of not only black American kids but every population group in this nation.”
  • “My style is in the 21st century. If you look at the process, it goes from photography through Photoshop, where certain features are heightened, elements of the photo are diminished. There is no sense of truth when you’re looking at the painting or the photo or that moment when the photo was first taken.”

Kehinde Wiley Barack Obama

Kehinde Wiley was commissioned in 2017 to paint a portrait of President Barack Obama for the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery, which has portraits of all the US presidents. The painting was unveiled on February 12, 2018, and depicts Obama sitting in a chair seemingly floating among foliage.

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Kehinde Wiley New Republic Photo


Kehinde Wiley Net Worth | Salary

He has earned himself a decent amount of money from his paintings. His estimated net worth is unknown its still under review and will be updated soon.

Kehinde Wiley Instagram




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