OMG! I love me some KEHINDE WILEY. Several years ago I was reading an article in The Advocate all about this phenomenal man and his art. The article contained several images of his work and I remember falling more and more in love with each word I read. As an African-American man, I was thrilled seeing his strong yet sensual images of young, black men. Some embracing each other. Some standing majestic and alone. All were vibrant and mesmerizing. As a black gay male I was excited to see a person of color featured in the magazine.
Several months later I was walking through Phoenix Art Museum on a first Friday. Imagine my surprise when I came across this fantastic painting that I distinctly remember seeing in the Advocate. Wiley's work is unique and easily identifiable. The patterns and brilliant colors that showcase beautiful black people make his pieces stand out in any gallery. The piece in Phoenix Art Museum was/is my favorite picture by Wiley.
I was a huge fan. And then my admiration grew even more. I started watching Lee Daniel's "Empire." Fans of the show couldn't help but notice the exceptional artwork featured in the show. I immediately recognized the artwork. This was Wiley through and through. The writing on the show was great. The music on the show - off the chain. The art - OMG!!!
And now I am extremely excited to announce that this fantastically talented man is coming to Phoenix Art Museum for an exhibit that will span several months. Wiley will be in town on October 6 to deliver a lecture at Phoenix College about his work. His exhibit at Phoenix Art Museum opens the following day and will remain through January 8, 2017. If you're a lover of art - please do yourself a favor and check out the exhibit. If you're a fan of Empire, please come out and listen to Wiley's lecture and learn more about the man. If you are LGBT (especially if you're an LGBT person of color), I encourage you come out and support this out and proud black same-gender loving individual and his work. Hope to see you at the lecture or at the opening of the exhibit.