(This is in response to some of the questions surrounding me painting him)
If we judged all artists’ contributions to the world by the kinds of people they are/were, or even the kinds of people we think they are/were, then the world would only like a fraction of the painters, musicians, writers, and actors we do now. Why? Because people are assholes, people make mistakes, people get egos, people are misunderstood, people are in the wrong places at the wrong times, people are inherently flawed, and celebrities of the arts are no different — we simply notice it more because our society loves to expose the flaws of the famous.
I love music made by heroin-addicts, paintings made by murderers, and movies made by megalomaniacal bigots… who they are, the shit they’ve done… it might make them worse people, but that has no relation to their creative contributions to the world. I’m not saying you need to like Michael Jackson, you can think he’s a creepy pedophile (there are plenty of reasons to support such thinking unfortunately), but he is one of the biggest movers and shakers in music history — his impact is undeniable.
Whatever kind of person he was, guilty or innocent, it doesn’t take away from that. His work doesn’t make him a better person or excuse his mistakes, but it’s why he is still adored. Whether you like him or not, you shouldn’t have to ask why others do. People like Chris Brown disgust me to the very core of my being, but strip away the ego, the stupidity, the abuse, and the shitty music he makes, and what’s left is someone who, despite me wishing there was no saving grace to a twatwaffle like that, can actually dance pretty damn well. There are a lot of people out there who are either proven to be shitty people, or alleged to be shitty people, who we still love, adore, or at least respect their talents, because being a good person doesn’t dictate whether or not you can make amazing things. It’d be great if the two always went hand in hand, but that would make choosing your role models a little too easy.