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Em (Blue)
Eminem born 1972
Born St. Joseph, Missouri
Artist Elizabeth Peyton, long drawn to painting controversial rock stars, uses soft grays and a generous brushstroke to highlight rapper Eminem’s fine features and strong tattoos. He assesses the viewer with a look that is at once steely-eyed and alluring. Eminem (born Marshall Mathers) has made a Grammy-winning career out of blurring boundaries—between white and black America, obscenity and vulnerability, despair and fantasy. Bullied as a child growing up in Detroit, Eminem thrived in rap battle competitions. In 1997 his first album, The Slim Shady LP, caught the attention of legendary rapper and impresario Dr. Dre. His second, The Marshall Mathers LP, went diamond, selling more than ten million copies despite its controversial lyrics.
His 2002 autobiographical movie, 8 Mile, led to an Academy Award for the song “Lose Yourself.” Eminem’s current staying power may be seen in his critically acclaimed “Monster” tour with Rihanna, and in the distinction of being the first rapper to headline London’s Wembley Stadium, in 2014.

Elizabeth Peyton (born 1965)
Etching with aquatint, 2003
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