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Kehinde Wiley: The World Stage: Israel

The latest installment in Wiley’s series imposing the language of old master portraiture onto the ethnicities and ethnic iconography most excluded from Western art

Kehinde Wiley’s acclaimed World Stage series inserts into the language of old master portraiture the very ethnicities and ethnic iconography that western art has most excluded from it, or that western art has portrayed solely in colonial, Orientalist terms. Among the countries and continents he has previously depicted in this ambitious traveling epic are Brazil, Africa, China, India and Sri Lanka. The rhetoric of Wiley’s paintings is powerful in its compositional candor, color palette and playfulness with constructions of visual meaning; as Paul D. Miller (DJ Spooky) notes, “Wiley’s canvas surfaces are a mirror reflection of America’s unceasing search for new meanings from the ruins of the Old World of Europe and Africa.” This volume includes a selection of new World Stage portraits, focusing on contemporary youth from Jewish-Ethiopian-Israeli, Jewish-Israeli and Arab-Israeli communities.

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