For New York-based portraitist Kehinde Wiley, 2015 is beginning as a very exciting year based on his expansive reach and growing recognition in the art world and beyond. Last month, Secretary of State John Kerry presented Mr. Wiley, along with seven other artists, the 2014 U.S. Department of State Medal of Arts for promoting cultural diplomacy and understanding through art. In receiving the medal, he joins the company of past and present medal honorees including Kiki Smith, Carrie Mae Weems, Sam Guilliam, Maya Lin, Mark Bradford, Pedro Reyes and Jeff Koons.
His works are everywhere. Turn on the television and his portraits star on the hit FOX television show, "Empire." Visit museums from Los Angeles to New York and a Wiley painting will be on display. Upcoming? Mr. Wiley's first museum retrospective opens at the Brooklyn Museum on February 20. Read more about Wiley's world here in this New York Times article by Deborah Solomon.