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Travel Tip: Art and Archaeology in United States
Kehinde Wiley: A New Republic

Kehinde Wiley:<EM> Portrait of Andries Stilte</EM>, 2006
Kehinde Wiley: Portrait of Andries Stilte, 2006
Kehinde Wiley: A New Republic
SEATTLE, WASHINGTON  •  Seattle Art Museum  •  Ongoing

Kehinde Wiley is one of the leading American artists to emerge in the last decade and he has been ingeniously reworking the grand portraiture traditions. In his consideration of portrait traditions, Wiley has been especially drawn to the grand aristocratic portraits of the 18th century.

The artist began his first series of portraits in the early 2000s during a residency at the Studio Museum in Harlem. He set out to photograph and recast assertive and self-empowered young men from the neighborhood in the style and manner of traditional history painting. Since then he has also painted rap and sports stars but for the most part his attention has focused on ordinary men of color in their everyday clothes. Trained at Yale in the 1990s, Wiley was steeped in the discussions concerning identity politics during this decade and he brings his personal insights and theoretical studies to his practice.

Wiley’s portraits are highly stylized and staged, and draw attention to the dialectic between a history of aristocratic representation and the portrait as a statement of power and the individual’s sense of empowerment.

Seattle Art Museum Website


Seattle Art Museum
1300 First Avenue
Seattle, WA 98101

Tel: (1) 206 65 431 00

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