06/03/2014 11:49 am ET

Art in the Age of Shenanigans: Kehinde Wiley x Spike Lee

Femme Pique par un Serpent
102 x 300 inches
<a href="">
Femme Pique par un Serpent 102 x 300 inches

On a recent sunny afternoon at Kehinde Wiley's airy, industrial studio near McCarren Park in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, Wiley's conversation with filmmaker Spike Lee was briefly interrupted by something that can't be ignored: the sudden appearance of two stately Great Danes, nearly as tall as the handler who'd shepherded them into the studio.

The dogs aren't Wiley's. Rather, they were canine models on hire for the day, due to play a part in the project that brought Lee and Wiley together in the first place: a portrait Wiley was painting, in partnership with Grey Goose, in his signature subversive-historical style. Lee's is the first of three portraits to be released at events this summer in celebrating "modern kings of culture"— he's joined in this designation by Carmelo Anthony and Swizz Beatz—pegged to the release of Le Melon, a new Grey Goose flavor that incorporates the Cavaillon melon, once beloved of French aristocracy.

Read more on Interview Magazine