Additional Images

'Alexander I, Emperor of Russia’ depicts a young woman wearing a leopard and tiger print gilet with a black fur-lined collar. She stands proudly in front of a lavishly patterned background inspired by the textiles of the iconic nineteenth century British designer, William Morris. The freedom of the sinuous botanical pattern sensually creeps across both the space and her black leggings and complements her voluptuous physique.   

The eighteen-year old girl was street cast by Wiley from Tivoli Gardens, in Kingston, Jamaica. She mimics the stance of  'Alexander I, Emperor of Russia’ in a portrait by Baron François Pascal Simon Gerard. In casting this black woman in a pose which originally belonged to a white man, Wiley initiates a powerful dialogue about race, identity and the history of gender politics in post-colonial culture. Here, Wiley blends graphic precision with the same masterly naturalism to match the empowered woman's dignified countenance.

'When I first started painting black women, it was a return home'
Kehinde Wiley interview with Nadja Sayej for The Guradian, 11 January 2019
Stephen Friedman Gallery, London, UK

October 2013 - November 2013

The World Stage: Jamaica | Stephen Freidman Gallery, London


December 2014 - February 2015

Political Patterns | Seoul Museum of Arts, 100-813, 61 Deoksugung-gil, Jubg-gu Seould korea



Kehinde Wiley-The World Stage Jamaica | Stephen Friedman Gallery


Kehinde Wiley ‘The World Stage: Jamaica’ at Stephen Friedman Gallery, London | Stephen Friedman Gallery


11 October 2013

Kehinde Wiley on his first US solo show for Frieze week | Evening Standard


December 2014

African Art Show Explores Class, Race, Migration | The Korea Herald

December 2015

AFRICA NOW Political Patterns | Seoul museum of art