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This landmark exhibition explores the influence of Michael Jackson on some of the leading names in contemporary art, spanning several generations of artists across all media. Curated by Dr Nicholas Cullinan, Director of the National Portrait Gallery, our summer exhibition has opened to coincide with what would have been Michael Jackson’s 60th birthday (on 29 August 2018).

Michael Jackson is one of the most influential cultural figures to come out of the 20th century and his legacy continues into the 21st century. His significance is widely acknowledged when it comes to music, music videos, dance, choreography and fashion, but his considerable influence on contemporary art is an untold story. Since Andy Warhol first used his image in 1982, Jackson has become the most depicted cultural figure in visual art by an extraordinary array of leading contemporary artists. For the first time, Michael Jackson: On the Wall brings together the works of over forty of these artists, drawn from public and private collections around the world, including new works made especially for the exhibition.

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Michael Jackson: On the Wall is produced with the co-operation of the Michael Jackson Estate.

Supported by the Michael Jackson Exhibition Circle

Until 21 October 2018

Open daily 10:00-18:00. Open late Friday until 21:00.

Special late night closing

The Gallery has extended its hours on Saturday 20 October until 20.00.

Wolfson and Lerner Galleries

National Portrait Gallery, St Martin's Place, London, WC2H 0HE

Tickets with donation from

£17.50 - £22

Tickets without donation from

£15.50 - £20

Advance booking is highly recommended for this exhibition.

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Featured Artists

Rita Ackerman, Njideka Akunyili Crosby, Emma Amos, Lyle Ashton Harris, Dara Birnbaum, Candice Breitz, Appau Jnr Boakye-Yiadom, Monster Chetwynd, Michael Craig-Martin, Dexter Dalwood, Graham Dolphin, Mark Flood, Isa Genzken, Michael Gitttes, Todd Gray, Maggi Hambling, David Hammons, Keith Haring, Jonathan Horowitz, Gary Hume, Rashid Johnson, Isaac Julien, Johannes Kahrs, KAWS, David LaChapelle, Louise Lawler, Klara Liden, Glenn Ligon, Sam Lipp, Isaac Lythgoe, Paul McCarthy, Rodney McMillian, Dawn Mellor, Dan Mihaltianu, Lorraine O'Grady, Catherine Opie, Yan Pei Ming, Grayson Perry, Paul Pfeiffer, Faith Ringgold, Michael Robinson, Mark Ryden, Susan Smith-Pinelo, Donald Urquhart, Kehinde Wiley, Hank Willis Thomas, Andy Warhol and Jordan Wolfson

Special guests visit the exhibition

ABC, 2017 by Graham Dolphin Courtesy of the artist © Graham Dolphin

Jackson 5 young people’s ticket

500 £5 tickets are available every day to anyone aged 25 years and under. Book online or in person at the Gallery. Under 12s are free and family tickets are also available. Subject to availability on a first come, first served basis. Proof of age will be required.


A range of free and ticketed events including talks and workshops complement the exhibition

Events (2)

2 events matching the search term Michael Jackson: On the Wall

Life Drawing: Drawing Resolutions for 2019

Life Drawing: Drawing Resolutions for 2019

A part of Friday Lates
28 December 2018, 18:30-20:30
Ondaatje Wing Theatre
Tickets: £10 (£8 concessions and Gallery Supporters) Book online, or visit the Gallery in person.

Join artist Robin-Lee Hall for a life session of New Year’s Resolutions in Drawing. Find inspiration from the vast archive of drawings in the Collection and a life model


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Performance: Chasing the Butterfly: A performance for actors, dancers and oboist

Performance: Chasing the Butterfly: A performance for actors, dancers and oboist

A part of Friday Lates
18 January 2019, 19:30
Please check signage on the day for details
Free ticket required. Book online, or visit the Gallery in person

This immersive performance is based upon the surviving paintings by Gainsborough of his daughters currently on display as part Gainsborough’s Family Album.


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Michael Jackson: On the Wall Hardcover Catalogue

Michael Jackson, one of the most successful recording artists of all time, also has the distinction of being the most depicted cultural figure; an inspiration for an extraordinary array of leading artists. This book, examines their artistic responses to an enduring international icon.

Exhibition Shop

Exclusive range of products and gifts inspired by the exhibition, are now available to pre-order and buy from the Gallery shops and online

Portrait Restaurant POP Menu

The Portrait Restaurant has views across Trafalgar Square and is the perfect spot for brunch, afternoon tea or dinner. Exhibition ticket holders can enjoy an exclusive three-course POP menu on Fridays with big-flavoured favourites from the USA.

Listen on Spotify

Playing the biggest hits, click image below to find your favorites.



Billie Jean ● Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough ● Wanna Be Startin' Somethin' ● Black or White ● Thriller ● Love Never Felt so Good●Bad - 2012 Remaster.P.Y.T ● (Pretty Young Thing) ● Remember the Time &#9679 Smooth Criminal - 2012 Remaster ● Xscape ● Beat It - Single Version ● Rock with You - Single Version ● You Rock My World ● The Way You Make Me Feel ● Shake Your Body (Down to the Ground) - Single Edit ● Jam.Human Nature ● They Don't Care About Us ● Scream&bull ● Leave Me Alone - 2012 Remaster ● Off the Wall ● Hollywood Tonight ● The Girl Is Mine&bull ● Man in the Mirror - 2012 Remaster ● In the Closet ● Dirty Diana - 2012 Remaster ● She's Out of My Life - Single Version ● I Just Can't Stop Loving You - 2012 Remaster ● Heal the World


Win a luxury London break for two

Enter our competition for a chance to win an overnight stay at the Haymarket Hotel, afternoon tea at Villandry St James’s and £200 Theatre Tokens Gift Card – the perfect West End break.

One lucky winner and guest will enjoy an overnight night stay with breakfast at Firmdale Hotels' Haymarket Hotel. Situated on the corner of Haymarket and Suffolk Place in the heart of theatre district, this gorgeous property combines traditional British design with contemporary elegance. Close to Leicester Square, the capital’s home of entertainment, it’s also within a five-minute walk of Piccadilly and St James’s.

Included in this fantastic prize is a £200 Theatre Tokens Gift Card which can be used at all of London’s West End theatres and at TKTS in Leicester Square. Choose from plays, musicals and entertainment from opera to dance.

Please note that since this competition opened, Villandry St James has closed down and will therefore will not be part of the competition prize.

Theatre Tokens

Leicester Square

This competition is now closed

National Portrait Gallery

St Martin's Place
020 7306 0055
Contact us

Opening hours

Daily 10.00 – 18.00
Fridays until 21.00.
Last admission to the exhibition is one hour before the Gallery closes.
Exiting commences ten minutes before the closing time.

Getting to the Gallery


Leicester Square / Charing Cross


Charing Cross


For directions to the Gallery please click here

Orange Street Street ramp/shop entrance in St Martin's Place
Click here for more information on Access at the Gallery

Recorded information: 020 7312 2463
Text Direct: 18001

Friday Lates

Enjoy a drink at the bar and music inspired by our exhibitions, join our hugely popular mass art occupation of the Gallery and explore ideas about art, culture and society with our talks programme every Friday until 21.00.