Kehinde Wiley is an artist living in New York. His works mainly feature portraits of black men in classic Renaissance scenes which have been purchased by celebrities such as Denzel Washington and Sir Elton John.
According to Contact Music, Wiley was surprised and disbelieving when he was called by Michael’s people, after Michael had seen his work at the Brooklyn Museum where the Ebony photo-shoot had taken place.
Wiley thought the call was a hoax and did nothing about it, until an actor friend told him it really was Michael, and that he was interested in his work.
Source: contactmusic.com & MJWN