A man of words and a man of his word, Kanye West:
“Your my Devil, Your my Angel, Your my Heaven, Your my Hell, Your my Now, Your my Forever, Your my Freedom, Your my Jail, Your my Lies, Your my Truth, Your my War, Your my Truce, Your my Questions, Your my Proof, Your my Stress and your my Masseuse”
There is an artistic continuity across all mediums. Kanye was a logical portrait subject, following his HAM partner Jay-Z. As a collage artist, the concept of standing amidst, alongside, in front and behind your words is captivating; who better to explore than rap artists?
“I fantasized about this back in Chicago”; a quick continuous contour line drawing on the plastic wrap.
“…the first year that I blow, how you say broke in Spanish?”; a quick yellow paint sketch, which looks a lot like former Governor Patterson as played by Fred Armisen.
“I’m saying, I will never ever let you live this down, down, down”; Busting out a second contour line drawing to get a better likeness.
“got caught with 30 rocks, the cop look like Alec Baldwin”; Many cops look like Alec, get it? 30 Rock?
“I need a happy ending and a new beginning”; Kanye is lost in a sea of words.
“but they would try to crack me if they ever see a black me”; good thing I started out with an orange Kanye, we don’t like violence.
“…choke a southpark writer with a fishstick”; Ah, the boys at Southpark and their Kanye episode. At this stage, building up the color field, choking the newspaper’s natural color.
“I need more drinks and less lights”; and more darks to balance this canvas right.
“In this white man world we the one’s chosen”; to be outlined in white.
“Fuck SNL and the whole cast”; filling in Kanye’s glasses and beard with some near black.
“Got treasures in my mind but couldn’t open up my own vault”; Kanye’s head split into several outlines as I begin to cut down on the final form.
“everybody know (I’m a motherfucking monster)”; the Kanye at the bottom of the canvas is a constant reminder to let me finish the painting.
“and I’m bout to take it to another level bitch”; starting to separate the fore, middle and background. Kanye is looking like a robot at this stage.
“God damn Yeezy How I hit em with the new style”; an image of a wordsmith emerging from words ripped from the headlines produced by his words.
“Balled in and Donald Trump taking dollars from yall”; but for sure, he didn’t steal that sweet suit.
“When the sun go down its the magic hour”; white back drop, twilight to the sides and Kanye emerging.
“And I want to show you how you all look like beautiful stars tonight”; and the picture is coming into focus.
“I sent this girl a picture of my dick.”; but it turns out she liked Borbay’s painting of my head better.
“Livin’ life like we won the sweepstakes, what!”; the painting sweepstakes that is.
“You weren’t perfect but you made life worth it, Stick around, real feelings might surface”; and the final surface will surface.
“With so much of everything, how do we leave with nothing”; Kanye is complete, replete with color and conversation.
Kanye is the second in my new portrait series, following Jay-Z. Up next? The man of many names representing the White Party.