One of the most significant young artists today, Kehinde Wiley (American, b. 1977) is known for his vibrant, large-scale paintings of black urban men rendered in the self-confident, empowered poses typical of classical European portrait painting. The World Stage: Israel is part of the artist's series exploring the global black diaspora and the international phenomenon of urban youth culture. Paintings in The World Stage: Israel are based on photographs the artist took of men of diverse religions and ethnicities living in Israel. The elaborate decorative backgrounds are based on historical Jewish designs and motifs. The portraits are complemented by a selection of Jewish textiles and works on paper, loaned by Ahavath Beth Israel synagogue in Boise, to provide examples of the types of traditional artifacts that inspired Wiley, including Torah ark curtains and a marriage contract.
Organized by the Boise Art Museum
Sponsored by the Laura Moore Cunningham Foundation