News / Art

National Portrait Gallery to host groundbreaking Michael Jackson exhibition


Andy Warhol, NPG

Nearly ten years after he died of an overdose Michael Jackson’s legacy lives on and now, the pop star is set to become the subject of a new exhibition at London’s National Portrait Gallery.

The exhibition, titled Michael Jackson: On the Wall, will consider the ways in which the singer influenced the art world. The work of more than 40 artists will be featured, including Andy Warhol, David LaChapelle, Grayson Perry, Maggi Hambling and Gary Hume, curated by the gallery’s director Nicholas Cullinan. A selection of new work will also be on display in the show, which will run 28 June to 21 October 2018.

Nicholas Cullinan commented: “Michael Jackson: On the Wall takes an entirely new and quite radical approach by exploring the cultural impact of a unique figure through contemporary art.

“All the artists included, despite coming from different generations and parts of the world, and employing a range of media, are fascinated by what Jackson represented and what he invented.

“It is rare that there is something new to say about someone so famous, but here that is the case. The exhibition breaks new ground for the National Portrait Gallery in its subject matter and the breadth and profile of the artists who have been invited to participate.

“It will open up new avenues for thinking about art and identity, encourage new dialogues between artists, and invite audiences interested in popular culture and music to engage with contemporary art. Like its subject, we hope this exhibition will be inclusive in appeal, uncompromising in artistic integrity and in the process, break down barriers.”


David LaChapelle, NPG