A new exhibition that opens in London on Thursday aims to tell “the untold story” of how pop superstar Michael Jackson’s inspired some of the world’s leading contemporary artists.
Among the images on display in “Michael Jackson: On the Wall” at the National Portrait Gallery are artworks by the legendary pop artist Andy Warhol — who first used Jackson’s image in 1982 — and the last portrait commissioned by the singer, called “Equestrian Portrait of King Philip II (Michael Jackson) by New York-based painter Kehinde Wiley.
Wiley began the painting — featuring Jackson astride a prancing horse — months before the singer died on June 25, 2009. He completed it after Jackson’s death.
Wiley, who is known for portraying contemporary black figures using European art history to question stereotypes, described working with Jackson as “extraordinary.”
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