Michael’s Talents Beyond Music: 1988
(Upper left photo: 1988- Michael Jackson, Bubbles and Greg Hildebrandt at Helmsley Palace in NY)
Artist Greg on these photos: ” I was very fortunate to have had the opportunity to spend time with Michael in 1988, during his Bad Tour, and in 1989 at his ranch, Neverland Valley. In 1988, Michael invited me to spend ten days with him during his Tour. He was performing in NJ at the time. As I lived in NJ, I told him I would be happy to drive back and forth to the city but he insisted on getting me a suite at the Helmsley Palace. We spend many hours together and I went to every concert with him. It was truly a wonderful experience. What struck me from the first moment I met Michael was how intelligent he was. I of course knew his music and knew what an incredible performer he was, but I had no idea that he had deep passions for art and art history. He was especially passionate about American Illustrators.
We spent many hours talking about Maxfield Parrish, N.C. Wyeth, Howard Pyle, Jesse Wilcox Smith and of course his favorite Norman Rockwell. Michael sent an armored truck to my studio and they picked up over 150 of my paintings. They were leaning all around the suite and we spent quite a bit of time discussing my art and classic literature. Michael was also an avid book collector and I was surprised to find out that he had every book I had illustrated. But my greatest surprise are when he asked me to give him drawing lessons. I quickly learned that he had a natural talent for art. We would set and sketch, chat and eat pop corn. It was casual and enjoyable.”
August 2009 Michael’s drawing (lower right) was auctioned and sold at $21,000.00.