While most of the stars of Kanye West’s “Famous” video have remained classily mum, celebs like Lena Dunham have slammed the singer over it, while an aide for George W. Bush reacted in a far more hilarious manner.
But what does the artist who created the original piece the video was inspired by think of it?
Apparently, he couldn’t be more pleased. Wait. Say what?
Kanye reportedly flew the Vincent Desiderio, the artist behind “Sleep” (a lineup you’ll likely recognize from Kanye’s own video, albeit with more high profile subjects) out to LA the morning of the video’s unveiling to the world to give him a sneak peek of his work, and the artist told The New York Times that what he saw nearly had him in tears.
“All of a sudden, I realized that it is my “Sleep” painting,” he says. “Holy sh*t! Oh my God! I was really speechless. Kanye saw things in it that I don’t know how he could’ve seen.”
Though Desiderio admits he was offered no money and gave no legal permissions for the nearly identical copy of his artwork, he insists the finished product is more of an honor than any sum he could have received. “Kanye is truly an artist. Talking to him was like talking to any of my peers in the art world — actually, more like talking to the brightest art students that have their eyes wide open.”
Well, then! That’s certainly one way to look at it — though we’re not so sure Taylor Swift and her BF Tom Hiddleston necessarily agree.
Vincent does see why the video’s subjects might be displeased (we should hope so!), though he says it’s all for the greater good of the art. “Artists are not saints. They’re not people whose first obligation is moral correctness.” He continued on to say that while he likes Lena Dunham and appreciates her opinion, “art goes to dangerous places.”
He did offer one unique viewpoint on the group, when he broke them down to their most basic states. “I [saw] them sleeping and vulnerable, like babies,” he said. “We’re all the same. They’re just famous.”
Famous… and overtly exposed, thanks to Kanye!
Are you surprised that Vincent supports Kanye’s work? Let us know over @BritandCo!
(h/t Cosmoplitan, photo via Michael Loccisano + Chelsea Lauren/Getty