NEW YORK (WRIC) — A new statue created by world-renowned artist Kehinde Wiley was unveiled in New York City Friday. “Rumors of War” will display in Times Square until December before finding a permanent home at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts.
The massive bronze statue depicts a young African American man with dreadlocks and a modern look of ripped jeans and Nike’s atop a horse.
The project originated when Wiley saw Confederate Gen. J.E.B. Stuart’s monument in Richmond.
“Sitting astride a massive horse in a striking pose, Wiley’s young, African-American subject presents a powerful visual repositioning of young black men in our public consciousness while directly engaging the national conversation around monuments and their role in perpetuating incomplete narratives and contemporary inequities,” the VMFA said about the statue on their website.
Wiley is known for his vibrant paintings of African Americans and his commissioned portrait of President Barack Obama, displayed at the National Portrait Gallery. He says the new statue’s inspiration is war and “an engagement with violence.”
“Rumors of War,” Wiley’s largest work to date, was paid for by a VMFA donor. It will be installed at the museum’s entrance on historic Arthur Ashe Boulevard.
For more information about the statue, visit here.