Nov 06 2010

The Jackson Seven

Category: Art,PhotosSeven @ 11:43 am

'Stardust' by Patrick Whelan, one of the "Jackson Seven"

'Stardust' by Patrick Whelan, one of the "Jackson Seven"

Just before he died, Michael acquired seven paintings from Whelan Art Galleries in Laguna Beach, California. At the site, click on the photo of Michael at lower right to see “The Jackson Seven” lined up next to one another.

Giclée prints of these pieces were put up for sale in November 2009 with proceeds going to ‘Make-A-Wish Foundation‘, one of Michael’s favorite charities. The original works were acquired by Michael in late Spring of 2009 as he began preparing for ‘This Is It‘ concerts in London, and were delivered to Michael just two weeks before he died.

Among them were three classic book cover paintings from “Alice in Wonderland“, “The Buccaneers“, and “Peter Pan“.  I do not know if prints are still available, and I’d suggest inquiring at the gallery if you’re interested in purchase: [email protected]

One piece in particular, called “Meditations“, was apparently of greatest interest to Michael.  He called it “The Blue Painting” and was apparently quite obsessed with it. This is a painting of a woman with a golden halo of leaves crowning her dark hair, seated in an angelic position, with her head resting on her knee. There are rumors that the painting reminded Michael of Lisa-Marie Presley, however this is just rumor. Absent firm verification, no one of course knows the truth about that except Michael himself.

From “” about these prints:

One of the common types of printing seen in galleries today is called “iris” or “giclée.” These terms refer to a computerized reproduction technique in which the image is generated from a digital file and printed by a special ink-jet printer using ink, acrylic or oil paints. Giclée printing offers one of the highest degrees of accuracy and richness of color available.

If you’re like most of us and can’t afford an original Chagall, Dali, Matisse, Miró, Picasso, Rembrandt or Renoir, visit Laguna Fine Art, also on Forest Avenue in downtown, which offers a selection of reproductions of master works and internationally renowned contemporary artists.

Signed giclées by local artist and published illustrator Patrick Whelan, whose style is “romantic realism,” are available at Whelan Art Galleries on North Coast Highway. Whelan, an honors graduate of Laguna College of Art and Design, has created hundreds of illustrations including a dozen Nancy Drew book covers. Limited editions of these images are highly collectible.

Amber Henry, collector/owner of the gallery shared this message after Michael’s death:

Michael Jackson’s love for art has changed our little Laguna Beach art gallery forever.

Patrick Whelan and I were graced with the rare honor of meeting Mr. Jackson and his daughter, Paris at the Beverly Hills art show last month. He wandered around our booth, with his daughter, picking out original book cover illustrations and various fine art pieces. “Peter Pan” and “The Buccaneers” were among the illustrations on his list. But, ultimately it was “Meditations” he truly fell in love with. Later we found out he referred to this piece as the “the blue painting”, and that he mentioned this piece almost every day.

Patrick and I delivered the art to his house two weeks ago. What an honor it is to have our art as a recent inclusion in Mr. Jackson’s collection, even if only for a short time, the art and Mr. Jackson and the memorable art he created, will live forever!

On behalf of artist Patrick Whelan and Whelan Galleries, we would like to extend our utmost respect for Mr. Jackson and condolences to his family and to his wonderful staff.

Thank You!

Amber Henry, Gallery Director/Owner
Whelan Galleries, Laguna Beach, CA

"Meditations" by Patrick Whelan (the "Blue Painting" to Michael)

"Meditations" by Patrick Whelan (ie: the "Blue Painting" to Michael)

In regards to “The Blue Painting” ie: “Meditations“, someone wrote to Patrick Whelan and asked him if he knew the reason behind the significance of that piece to Michael, and if it may have been due to a resemblance to Lisa-Marie.

Patrick replied:

Thank-you for your lovely comments about the art. I do appreciate that. Meditations was one of my personal favorite paintings, so it was particularly gratifying for me when an artist of Michael’s stature was also drawn to it. I was very slow to see the connection to Lisa Marie because, of course, I know the model who actually posed for it. Nevertheless, I have heard this from so many people, including many who have come into the gallery and seen the print there, that it is finally becoming apparent to me.

But the clincher for me occurred a couple of weeks ago when I ran across an article that was published in a newspaper in Taiwan. They featured the Meditations painting alongside three photos of Lisa Marie which had been taken at the time she was with MJ. The resemblance was indeed striking. I am now convinced absolutely that this was the reason for his connection to it. He may have been planning to show it to her, or even to present it to her as a gift. But unfortunately, he passed so soon after it’s purchase that we can never know these things for sure.

I doubt very much if Lisa Marie is even aware of it’s existence. I think it would be a very wonderful thing though, if she did see this work, because then she would know that she was still in Michael’s heart even to the end.

Perhaps one day she will see it. I certainly hope so. I really think Michael would have liked that.

Best always,


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9 Responses to “The Jackson Seven”

  1. Eli says:

    According people close him this painting was bought by Michael thinking of Lisa Marie, maybe he saw on it a spiritual resemblance, something more deep than physical features.It touchs me to think as Lisa Marie remained in the MJ’s heart and mind until his very end, though their differences and fights they loved very much each other. Unafortunately loving as they did couldn’t find a point and solve their different point of views. I don’t have hard time to completely believe that he bought it for her. Michael loved her with every bit of his heart, there are many testimonials from people he met ,more than one have commented the beautiful things Michael talked them on her. The saddest thing maybe is Lisa didn’t know it before he died how big his love was. I hope she knows about this beatufil art now.

  2. Leanne says:

    I believe Michael and LisaMarie really did love each other very much. Its all so sad. Paintings beautiful though. Another lovely story seven. Thanks.

  3. Cherry says:

    Woooow…these paintings are STUNNING and reading about them now in connection with Michael…magical. It’s totally him. I see a bit of Lisa Marie in the Blue Painting, too and it would be actually very sweet to think that he was obsessed with it because it reminded him of her…

    But maybe he just liked it because of the innocence it exudes, the beauty and the magic. It’s just beautiful!!!

  4. Susan T says:

    Seven, what a lovely new subject to share with us. Thank you so much. Every thing you create and share reveals your heartfelt love of Michael.

    Mr. Whelan’s work is ethereally beautiful. I can certainly see why Michael appreciated it. All of the paintings are exquisitely beautiful. I especially love Secret Forest and Penelope’s Song.

    Laying aside our personal feelings about Lisa, we might want to think about the moment Michael caught sight of this painting and how it must have affected him. Rumor, conjecture…they’re irrelevant. I’ve never met Lisa Marie Presley but I can certainly see an uncanny resemblance to her in this painting. Not only does it capture a beautiful scene, it suggests loving contemplation. I wonder if he was moved to imagine her thinking of him, remembering the love and the magic they shared. If he would have had the chance to present it to her forgotten feelings would have certainly stirred her heart.

    Was it more than just a beautiful painting to him? You’d have to deny that he was human to think that he didn’t see Lisa Marie in this painting. I know it’s hard for many fans to accept that Michael and Lisa truly loved each other but I believe they did. Many unfortunate things happened in their marriage that drove them apart and caused Lisa to behave very badly and do things that I find very hard to forgive, but their hearts are connected and even though we must move on when circumstances force us to, true feelings never really die.

    Being availed to the artwork that Michael appreciated and acquired continues to show us his exquisite appreciation and recognition of beauty.

    I hope with all my heart that many of his beloved paintings and other personal treasures are not pilfered and callously auctioned off to the highest bidder. They belong to Michael’s children. I hope the Estate has the conscience to resist the temptation to make money from them. Every time I hear about a “Michael Jackson” glove or other personal possession being “auctioned” off, I cry. It must stop. His children should be the final voice in whether or not these things stay with them, or they ultimately give consent to offer them to the public. They read. They must be aware. If they can actually interpret some of the news, knowing that their beloved father leads the list of dead entertainers must cause their hearts to stop beating.

    The world of celebrity has a very dark and ugly side, doesn’t it? When Michael was here, he held back that ugliness. He brought beauty to it. That beauty is gone forever now.

  5. appleh says:

    Thank you Seven, Michael had always a good taste and was very well educated at art !!!

  6. Joyce says:

    Thanks for sharing these gorgeous pictures. I did go to the Whelan site to look at more of the artwork. His artwork does seem very ethereal and angelic or even magical to me. I can certainly see why Michael was drawn to it. The “Blue Painting” as Michael refered to it, does bear a striking resemblance to Lisa Marie at the time when they were together. It does make you wonder. Only Michael really knows for sure. So, as with so many things that are questioned and discussed we can only assume what we think is the truth.
    When I look at the “Stardust” picture I see a feminine form of Michael. That may just be me, but I think that is why I like that one so much.

    The message that the gallery shared after Michael’s death is yet another testament to how Michael touched so many lives.
    It makes me smile to know that he was enjoying time spent with his children sharing the things he loved in the weeks and months before his tragic death.

  7. Lauren says:

    Lovely paintings. So Michael.
    Maybe someone can pass the information
    to the party mentioned. No one can know
    what was in Michael’s heart and memory..
    very poignant.

  8. Anne Mette Jepsen says:

    Thank you Seven!

  9. Simona says:

    Seven, what a treasure!
    Thank you for sharing, I personally didn’t know about these, and my, are they gorgeous…… all of them. So dreamy, ethearal, I love them all, especially Stardust, Peter pan, the Buccaneer… oh, and Meditations as well, yes. They all exude magic, don’t they? And a lot of melancholy too, but I must say I can see perfectly how Michael would love these pieces…..
    What a beautiful soul…. it breaks my heart to think how he carried Paris with him on such an expedition…. I truly hope and confide that she’s inherited her daddy’s deep love and understanding of the fine arts…