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Kehinde Wiley Denies Accusation of Sexual Assault by Artist

Kehinde Wiley Denies Accusation of Sexual Assault by Artist


After an artist accused the painter Kehinde Wiley of sexual assault in an Instagram put up on Sunday, Mr. Wiley denied the allegations, saying on his personal Instagram account that “somebody I had a short, consensual relationship with nearly three years in the past is now making a false accusation about our time collectively.”

“These claims will not be true and are an affront to all victims of sexual abuse,” Mr. Wiley added.

Mr. Wiley, who was born in Los Angeles, is among the finest recognized painters within the United States, and is legendary for his 2018 portrait of President Barack Obama.

On Sunday, Joseph Awuah-Darko, a British-born Ghanaian artist and the founding father of the Noldor Artist Residency in Ghana, mentioned in a prolonged Instagram put up that on June 9, 2021, Mr. Wiley assaulted him twice throughout and after a dinner in Ghana that was held within the famed artist’s honor. In the primary incident, Mr. Awuah-Darko mentioned that he had been directing Mr. Wiley to a washroom when the star instantly grabbed his buttocks.

Later that night, Mr. Awuah-Darko mentioned, a second assault occurred that was “rather more extreme and violent.” Mr. Awuah-Darko didn’t give additional particulars of that incident on Instagram, however in a phone interview, he mentioned {that a} sexual encounter started consensually, however that it then moved to a bed room, the place he says that Mr. Wiley compelled himself on him after Mr. Awuah-Darko had mentioned he didn’t wish to go additional.

Mr. Awuah-Darko confirmed The New York Times textual content exchanges he mentioned he had with Mr. Wiley from after their encounter, during which he repeatedly instructed Mr. Wiley that he was lacking him and mentioned he wished to satisfy once more. Mr. Awuah-Darko mentioned that he had initially satisfied himself that his encounters with Mr. Wiley had been loving. It was solely within the fall of 2023, after remedy, that he admitted to himself that the incidents had been assaults and instructed a pal what had occurred.

“I’m conscious I’m not the right sexual assault sufferer,” Mr. Awuah-Darko mentioned, “however that is what occurred to me. I’m hoping different folks come ahead.”

In an emailed assertion, Mr. Wiley mentioned that Mr. Awuah-Darko had “been making an attempt to be a part of my life ever since we met. He flew to Nigeria to attend my birthday party, tried to go to my residence in upstate New York, despatched me heat and cordial textual content messages, and attended my exhibition on the de Young Museum in San Francisco nearly a 12 months in the past, posting on Instagram that the present by his ‘pricey pal’ was ‘breathtaking.’”

On Sunday, Mr. Wiley’s legal professionals despatched Mr. Awuah-Darko a stop and desist letter, shared with The Times, demanding that the Ghanaian artist delete his Instagram posts and chorus from making what it mentioned had been false statements in opposition to Mr. Wiley. Mr. Awuah-Darko mentioned Sunday that he had not seen the letter.

No legal costs have been filed in opposition to Mr. Wiley; Mr. Awuah-Darko mentioned the accusations wouldn’t be dealt with nicely in Ghana, the place the Parliament handed a invoice in February that may impose jail phrases on individuals who determine as L.G.B.T.Q. or set up homosexual advocacy teams.



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