Kehinde Wiley: The Photographs

Kehinde Wiley found many of the subjects in his latest show — an exhibition of photographs going up tomorrow at Deitch Projects — at the Fulton Street Mall. “I go down there because it’s much like 125th Street, where young people come to congregate and show off and flirt and be seen,” says the artist, who’s best known for his grand paintings casting young African-American men in hip-hop garb against highly decorative, anachronistic scenes inspired by centuries of Western art. After years of using his photos to paint from, letting them wither on the ground of his studio floor, Wiley decided to show the source material itself. The fourteen pictures — a selection from his recent book Black Light, all shown in this slideshow — resemble his paintings, except that if you look closely, you can see dirt underneath fingernails and tears in weary eyes.

After Pontormo’s ‘Two Men With a Passage’ from Cicero’s “On Friendship,” 2009
After Sir Anthony van Dyck’s ‘Le Roi à la Chasse,’ 2009
After Sir Anthony van Dyck’s ‘Triple Portrait of Charles I,’ 2009
After Sir Joshua Reynolds’s ‘Miss Susanna Gale,’ 2009
After Albrecht Dürer’s ‘Self-portrait,’ 2009
After John Singer Sargent’s ‘The Countess of Rocksavage,’ 2009
After El Greco’s ‘The Annunuciation,’ 2009
After Titian’s ‘Penitent Mary Magdalene,’ 2009
After Giovanni Bellini’s ‘St. Francis in the Desert,’ 2009
After Sir Joshua Reynolds’s ‘Portrait of Doctor Samuel Johnson,’ 2009
After Hans Holbien the Younger’s ‘Portrait of Simon George,’ 2009
After George Romney’s ‘Elizabeth Warren As Hebe,’ 2009
After Jean-Bernard Restout’s ‘Sleep,’ 2009
After Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres’s ‘Armand Cambon’ and Michel Dumas’s ‘Saint Germaine of Pibrac,’ 2009
Kehinde Wiley: The Photographs