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  • Provenance

    Conner Contemporary Art, Washington D.C.
    Private Collection
    Christie's, New York, First Open Post-War and Contemporary Art, March 11, 2010, lot 77
    Acquired at the above sale by the present owner

  • Exhibited

    Washington D.C., Conner Contemporary Art, White, May 7 - June 11, 2005

  • Artist Biography

    Kehinde Wiley

    Applying the language and devices of royal portraiture to unnamed archetypes of the Black American experience, Kehinde Wiley bestows the pride and prestige of history painting to groups that it has too often overlooked. Rather than depicting the European aristocracy, Wiley’s portraits d’apparats place African Americans against florid backdrops and atop rearing horses, retaining the pomp and opulence of his historical antecedents and situating Black men and women dressed in everyday clothing as the subjects of art historical aggrandization. Often the accoutrements of urban life lend themselves quite readily to historical genres of portraiture; Air Jordans and Timberland boots can be as appropriate to monarchist might as emerald and ermine. Wiley’s goal is twofold: by subverting outmoded forms of expression through the substitution of the sitter, the artist criticizes the historical neglect of adequate Black representation and glorifies undeservingly maligned representatives of modern American life, what he calls “the ability to create painting and destroy painting at once.”

    Wiley’s work has been the subject of universal acclaim. His work can be found in the collections of major institutions across the world, including the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and the Wadsworth Atheneum, Hartford. Wiley was also selected in 2017 to paint the official portrait of President Barack Obama, the first Black artist to be given such an honor. Recently, Wiley founded Black Rock, an artist residency in Dakar, Senegal, bringing an important artistic resource to the African continent.

     
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169

St. John the Baptist (after Francesco del Cossa's San Petronio Altarpiece)

2005
graphite, gouache on paper
62 3/4 x 48 5/8 in. (159.4 x 123.5 cm)
Signed and dated "Kehinde Wiley 05" lower right.

Estimate
$15,000 - 20,000 

Sold for $21,250

Contact Specialist
Rebekah Bowling
Head of Sale
New York
+ 1 212 940 1250

New Now

New York Auction 17 September 2015