‘Extraordinary’: Kanye West’s Artwork as a 17-Year-Old Appears on ‘Antiques Roadshow’ and Gets Appraised


Some of the art that Kanye West made as a 17-year-old was shown on PBS’ “Antiques Roadshow” on Monday, March 30. The pieces were brought in by the husband of West’s first cousin, who didn’t mention his name.

Laura Wolley, art expert and independent appraiser, selected five of those works for the segment. She then said the artwork is worth between $16,000 to $23,000 and will most likely appreciate in value over time.

Some of the artwork that Kanye West did as a teenager recently appeared on an episode of “Antiques Roadshow.” (Photo: RB/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images via Getty Images)

Wolley also read a flyer from one of West’s first art shows, which listed some of the places he’s studied. They include the Polaris Charter Academy in Chicago, the Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago State University and Nanjing University in the People’s Republic of China.

“This fall Kanye will begin his studies for the Bachelor of Fine Arts degree at the American Academy of Art in Chicago and continue to pursue a career as a music producer as well,” the flyer reads.

At one point, the man who brought in the artwork explained how West was able to study at such famous schools at a young age.

“Because his mother was an English college professor,” he said. “She traveled all around the world, and he went everywhere with her. He’s got a much more global view of art and culture. His mother pushed him to do anything that he wanted to do and made sure it was available for him.”

Earlier in the segment, Wolley explained why she chose the five pieces, as the man brought in several. She then praised West’s work.

“I think what really attracted me to these pieces is that a lot of people are probably not aware of how talented he is as an artist outside of his music career,” she explained. “I think these pieces demonstrate an extraordinary facility as an artist, and I selected this grouping because it shows the different mediums he was working in.”

In 2005, when West was promoting his sophomore LP “Late Registration,” he spoke with Sway Calloway on MTV about his artwork and showed some of his pieces.

Afterward, Calloway asked him if he finds time to draw since his music has taken off.

“Seldomly,” answered West. “I draw a lot of stuff to give an example. Like, if I’m working on my crib, and I’m meeting with my interior decorator or something I’ll just [show what I want by drawing it]. Or sitting with the art designer for my packaging. … Now, drawing, I just use it as a language.”

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