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Portrait of Kehinde Wiley at Roberts Projects. Photo Julius Chiu

By Jessica Lynne

Kehinde Wiley is ebullient yet poised on the afternoon of our Zoom conversation. The painter — one of contemporary art’s most celebrated — joined from a sunlit room in Roberts Projects, where a new series, “Colorful Realm,” was being prepared to open to the public. We met on the eve of this opening, when, for any artist and their team, every minute is valuable, any small fire may arise. Initially, I expected I would begin our conversation on this note, asking Wiley if it ever gets any easier for him, when a team member popped in to inform me that Wiley was running just a few minutes behind. He had stepped outside to talk to his mom. I grinned, and when Wiley finally appeared on the screen, I knew where we’d begin: with Ms. Freddie Mae Wiley.