but is it art?

Macklemore Finally Explains Why He Owns a Bizarre Nude Justin Bieber Painting

Celebrities Visit SiriusXM Studios - January 25, 2016
Never change. Photo: Cindy Ord/Getty Images

Macklemore has a new album out, but that’s not what we’re here to talk about. Today, we’d like to direct your attention to Rolling Stone’s new profile on the Mack, which, while we’re sure it unpeels the many layers of his white privilege, also contains a much more important nugget of information about one of his important purchases. While touring the Seattle studio Macklemore built with Ryan Lewis, writer Jonah Weiner noticed a particularly odd piece of decor hanging on the thrift king’s wall:

On the ground floor is a recording room with a ton of audio gear, a wall of guitars and racks of outlandish garments spouting sequins, fringe and feathers. “Those are Ben [Haggerty, Macklemore’s real name]’s,” Lewis notes. There is a kitschy velvet painting of a bald eagle, an oil painting of Drake dancing and a transfixing rendition of a naked Justin Bieber with maple syrup pouring down his chest onto a pancake balanced on his boner. “Ben spent a lot of time buying weird stuff on Etsy,” Lewis says.

Yes, the man not only collects hand-me-down fur coats but oil paintings of the Biebs, in the nude, from Etsy. And Weiner’s description doesn’t undersell it either: We found the NSFW painting in question (posted below with permission from the artist Dan Lacey), and boy does that maple syrup ever drip down onto Bieber’s pancake-adorned dick:

Photo: Dan Lacey/Etsy

Why would someone think to paint such a weirdly patriotic thing, you’re wondering right now? Well, it seems to have been inspired from one of Bieber’s tweets in 2010, in which the man was just innocently thinking aloud about his desire for some pancakes with some “nice maple syrup.” But sure enough, this brilliant Etsy mind picked up on Bieber’s thirst and fulfilled the Biebs’s request in ways only Macklemore could’ve dreamed.

The painting’s artist, Dan Lacey, tells Vulture he was unaware Macklemore purchased his Bieber piece. He says he painted the image — which he calls the “Bieber crotch pancake” — before the paparazzi photos of Bieber’s penis leaked, and that it represents what he’s coined the “Prescient Pancake” phenomenon. “To me, pancakes happen at a spiritual level,” he explains, “sometimes expressing themselves as eroticism.”

Update: TMZ caught up with Macklemore on a street in Los Angeles where he finally expounded on the painting’s origin story. “It’s an investment piece. I think that that painting is going to be worth a lot of money,” he joked at first. “I search eBay and Etsy for fine pieces of art. It cost me about $20, I’m pretty sure that the minute that the Justin Bieber album went number one, I’m pretty sure that painting went to about $30, $33. Do the math, man.” The rapper then proceeded to reveal the real story — he bought the painting for a “white elephant” gift exchange, but it was left at his studio and never retrieved. And there you have it.

Macklemore on His Nude Justin Bieber Painting