Dana Schutz’ Prescient “Autopsy of Michael Jackson” (2005)

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Olympia Lambert has resurrected Dana Schutz’ painting The Autopsy of Michael Jackson (2005) [pictured above] and ponders how much it is worth nowadays:

Anyone care to guess how much it’s went up in value in the past 48 hours? My own guestimate would be at least into the $2 million range.

In an interview with Mei Chin for Bomb Magazine, Scultz spoke about her Jackson masterpiece and raised some questions that are true now more than ever:

I also painted The Autopsy of Michael Jackson. In some ways he’s the most self-made man there is, to the point of it becoming really scary. I was thinking of the painting as a photograph that hasn’t been taken yet. I posited all these question around Michael Jackson’s death: How does he die? How old is he? What shape is he in? What does he look like naked? He ended up looking like just a dead man. Which for me was very strange. I ended up having sympathy for him. There is an immortality about him in life. In the painting there is an autopsy incision alluding to his insides, which is intrusive and contradicts the constant reforming of his external features. In the painting he is very mortal. (source)

Considering Michael Jackson’s many many flaws and the circumstances of his death, he seems more mortal than Schultz’ painting. Also, I suspect that if she were to repaint that image today perhaps there would be figures surrounding Michael Jackson’s body tweeting what they were seeing and feeling–quiet contemplation seems almost quaint nowadays.

NOTE: THIS POST WAS CORRECTED AS THE WRONG IMAGE WAS POSTED EARLIER. THE EARLIER IMAGE WAS “PRESENTATION” BY THE SAME ARTIST.