The Kid Should See This

A New Republic: The portrait work of artist Kehinde Wiley

Blending and contrasting contemporary clothes and objects with ornate fabrics, lush plant life, detailed patterns, and bold colors that reference earlier eras of art history, Kehinde Wiley‘s heroic portraits are larger than life. On canvas, in sculptures, or depicted in stained glass, his subjects are framed with empathy and grandeur. From the Brooklyn Museum in 2015:

The works presented in Kehinde Wiley: A New Republic raise questions about race, gender, and the politics of representation by portraying contemporary African American men and women using the conventions of traditional European portraiture… Wiley’s signature portraits of everyday men and women riff on specific paintings by Old Masters, replacing the European aristocrats depicted in those paintings with contemporary black subjects, drawing attention to the absence of African Americans from historical and cultural narratives.

As of February 12, 2018, Wiley is probably best-known for his painting of the 44th President of the United States Barack Obama. It was revealed at the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery along with artist Amy Sherald‘s portrait of First Lady Michelle Obama. The two portraits will join the museum’s complete collection of American presidential portraits.

Dive deeper into more art and more museums with these videos: Relighting Seurat’s Circus Sideshow (Parade de cirque), the meticulous work that goes into running the Museum of Modern Art, Yayoi Kusama’s Infinity Mirrors, and The Challenge of a Straight Line and ‘Making Art Concrete’.

This feature is being tested. Saves will disappear if you clear cookies. Find saved videos here.

🌈 Related videos

The Fine Art of Coffee Portraiture

Rion Nakaya

The breathtaking courage of Harriet Tubman

Rion Nakaya

Ain’t Got No, I Got Life – Nina Simone plays live in London (1968)

Rion Nakaya

Students remember Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I have a dream” speech

Rion Nakaya

Tableaux Vivants: Caravaggio paintings performed live

Rion Nakaya

Portrait of Innovation: James Conway Farley

Rion Nakaya

Bessie Coleman, The First Female African American Pilot

Rion Nakaya

The meticulous work that goes into running the Museum of Modern Art

Rion Nakaya

Adrian Esparza’s Wake and Wonder at the Pérez Art Museum Miami

Rion Nakaya

 
Browse the TKSST Video Collections

Get 7 smart videos delivered every week.

 

Subscribe