Kanye and George Condo

Why you should know about him: George Condo is an American visual artist who has been a key figure in painting, drawing, sculpture, and printmaking since the 1980s. He sees himself as an artificial realist, coining the term to mean "the realistic representation of that which is artificial." He's been monumentally influential to a crop of younger painters since his days in NYC's East Village, where he occasionally worked at Andy Warhol's studio, later working between Los Angeles, Munich, and Paris. He also collaborated with famed writer William S. Boroughs on a drawing/writing series titled "Ghost of Chance," published by the Whitney Museum in 1991.

In 2010, Condo created the now well-known paintings for Kanye's My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy album, including the cover, the "Power" single cover, the "Runaway" single cover, and tour merchandise. These paintings were also part of a limited release of Hermes scarves done by Kanye and Condo. Most recently, he painted the single cover for "Way Too Cold."

"Being a young artist in the early ’80s was an uphill battle. There was a lot of pressure to work big — like Georg Baselitz, Julian Schnabel and David Salle — but a signature style was something I rebelled against."

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