III DANGEROUS Michael Jackson, the Moonwalker as Sun King

Michael Jackson went down in history as the Moonwalker with the symbol of the moon, just to become simultaneously the Sun King by using the symbol of he sun. In 1991, Michael Jackson released his DANGEROUS album and the man who danced on the moon as the Moonwalker established himself as the Sun King:

Thematically, I was interested in working with Michael Jackson’s identity as a royal. He had a fascination with aristocracy, actively pushing forward his own title “The King of Pop”. […] Michael was famously photographed in an elaborate golden throne which I looked to for inspiration. Similar to paintings of Napoleon or Louis IV, I want this to feel like a monumental portrait of the King.

Mark Ryden, the painter of the 1991 DANGEROUS Cover by Michael Jackson in an interview 2018. 1
Michael Jackson Dangerous Cover Mark Ryden 1991

picture: Michael Jackson’s DANGEROUS album cover 1991, SONY Music Entertainment. Painter of the artwork named „King of Pop“ (acrylic on wood 82” x 74”) is Mark Ryden. The original of the painting is exhibited in the Paul Kasmin Gallery, 293 Tenth Ave., New York, NY 10001. source

About Napoleon’s role on Michael Jackson’s DANGEROUS, see this article:

Napoleon ( 1769 – 1821) had a passion for calculated publicity. In 1804, the man crowned himself on his own initiative because he decided it was a good thing to do. The Frenchman, however, probably lacked the creative imagination needed for such a grandiose ceremony and Napoleon copied the pompous script of his coronation from one of his predecessors: Louis XIV.

picture: The French Sun King Louis XIV (1638-1715) was particularly skilled with public relations. The man surrounded himself with the symbol of the sun and had himself called „Sun King“. His golden symbol of the sun adorns the entrance gate to his palace of Versailles in France.

Michael Jackson, the Moonwalker about the Sun King and the symbol of the sun: „Great!“

Obviously, the french Sun King Louis XIV understood the theater better than Napoleon. Louis XIV used Greek gods and selected symbols to build his image. By doing so, Louis XIV became immortal as the Sun King and gained himself the respect from Michael Jackson, who in turn immortalized himself as the Moonwalker. The Sun King danced with the sun; the Moonwalker danced with the moon. But since 1986 at the latest, Michael Jackson, the „King of Pop“ surrounded himself with the symbol sun like the French Sun King Louis XIV. And with his role of „Captain EO“, Michael Jackson became the Sun King in his own special way (EO refers to the Greek goddess Eo, symbolizing dawn. Dawn is followed by sunrise). Then in 1991, Michael Jackson presented himself as the sun in person on his DANGEROUS cover.

More about the Moonwalker Michael Jackson and his symbol of sunrise that he used in his career is available in this article:

In 2011, a book called „48 Laws of Power“ was auctioned. In the book you can find marketing strategies from the Sun King Louis XIV and tips on how to use symbols to play with power. Under the instruction from Louis XIV on how to choose the symbol sun, the Moonwalker Michael Jackson had noted the following:

„like me and Military – great on arm Band
Wow
Do This
Find an Image“

Michael Jackson’s notes in the book „The 48 Laws of Power“ by Robert Greene. 2
Michael Jackson Sun King The 48 Laws of Power Robert Greene book 1998 notes.

picture: Notes by Michael Jackson in Robert Green’s book „The 48 Laws of Power“, Bonhams Auction House. 1998, A Joost Elfers Production

The tips from the Sun King Louis XIV in the paragraph marked by Michael Jackson are as follows:

„You can play with images like these, weaving visual clues into an encompassing gestalt (…) Establish a trademark like these to set yourself apart. Then take the game further: Find an image or symbol from the past that will neatly fit your situation and put it on your shoulders like a cape. It will make you seem larger than life. Because of the light it shines on the other stars which make up a kind of court around it, because of the just and equal distribution of its rays to all alike, because of the good it brings to all places, producing life, joy and action, because of its constancy from which it never varies, I chose the sun as the most magnificent image to represent a great leader.“

The French Sun King Louis XIV cited in the book „The 48 Laws of Power“. 3

The Sun King Louis XIV is said to have been an artist. And also a dancer. Louis XIV loved the theater and controlled it. Napoleon copied the Sun King and his symbols, but did Napoleon actually understand theater? Michael Jackson, in his art, created images used by the French Sun King Louis XIV and Napoleon I. And Michael Jackson also understood the theater.

Michael Jackson Dangerous Cover Symbol Sun Remember the Time Sun King egypten god www.partofhistory.de

l.: Michael Jackson 1991 as Egyptian god of the sun in REMEMBER THE TIME.
r.: Michael Jackson 1991 as the personified sun on his DANGEROUS album cover.

Michael Jackson was a master of uniting opposites in his own public persona. He did not allow himself to be put into a certain category. And somehow Michael Jackson, the „King of Pop“, managed to be associated with the symbol of the moon and at the same time choose the sun „as the most magnificent image to represent a great leader„. Somehow the Moonwalker became Sun King too.

Michael Jackson Moonwalker Sun King symbol  Remember The Time shortfilm  Arno Bani 1999  www.partofhistory.de

l.: Michael Jackson as Sun King in ancient Egypt 1991 in his short film REMEMBER THE TIME source
r.: The Moonwalker Michael Jackson carrying a robe symbolizing the sparkling stars of the firmament. 1999 photographed by Ano Bani

The French Sun King Louis XIV had a passion for Apollo, the Greek god of the sun. The French King had his palace in Versailles designed in such a way that in sunlight it looked as if it had been made out of gold. In addition to his political office, he was also a King of the arts and thus had something in common with „MJ“, who is hidden in the golden dog as the King on the DANGEROUS cover.
This dog, representing the sun and „MJ“ the King of Pop. The sun sitting opposite to the moon on the DANGEROUS album cover by Michael Jackson?

Michael Jackson or „The sun as the the most magnificent image to represent a great leader.“

Michael Jackson symbol sun king remember the time egypt god history leader tour they dont care about us gol

l.: Michael Jackson danced the sun in REMEMBER THE TIME 1991 source
r.: Michael Jackson as a leader to open his HIStory concerts starting from 1996 source

The Moonwalker, who as the leader Captain EO brings „light and beauty“ like a Sun King

Not only in 1991 on the DANGEROUS cover, but already in 1986 Michael Jackson had chosen the image of the sun and represented another great leader: Captain EO. The name „EO“ is derived from Eos, the Greek goddess of dawn. And dawn is followed by sunrise.

„Captain Eo … entrusted with the responsibility of bringing … light and beauty.“

Michael Jackson in his autobiography MOONWALK 1988. 4

picture: The „Captain EO“ movie poster from 1986. The image of Michael Jackson is depicted like a sunrise on the horizon. source

Captain EO. Eos = Greek for „dawn“

Michael Jackson’s film directed by George Lucas has been an attraction in 4 D in the DisneyTheme Parks since 1986. The film is a science fiction space adventure about the young Captain EO on a mission to save a world from evil. EO, who „brings light and beauty“ fulfills his mission, battles with dark forces (the night) and celebrates a „triumphant victory of good over evil“. Under the leadership of Captain Eo, light triumphed over darkness. The sun triumphed in its battle over the night.
But the „dawn“ of Captain EO is only a fragment of all the symbols of the sun and the light with which the Moonwalker had surrounded himself throughout his career.

After the dawn of 1986, the sun is standing at the firmament in 1991

In 1986, Michael Jackson symbolized „dawn“ as Captain EO. In 1991, Michael Jackson, the Moonwalker, embodied the sun in its full glory on his DANGEROUS cover and the King of Pop becomes, so to speak, the Sun King.

Michael Jackson Captain Eo symbol dawn eo greek break of dawn Dangerous album cover 1991 symbol sun king

l.: 1986 dawn appears on the horizon on the movie poster for „Captain EO“ source
r.: In 1991 the sun is up high in the sky on Michael Jackson’s DANGEROUS album cover.

Louis XIV french sun king Versailles palace michael Jackson Dangerous Album cover 1991 symbol meaning

l.: Presentation Louis XIV on his palace in Versailles.
r.: Presentation Michael Jackson on his DANGEROUS album cover 1991.

Home » PaRt of History. Beiträge » PaRt of History: Michael Jackson aRt (english) » III DANGEROUS Michael Jackson, the Moonwalker as Sun King

Quellen

  1. Mark Ryden, Interview 2018, „Sound And Vision: Michael Jackson’s „Dangerous,“ cover artwork by Mark Ryden“: „Thematically, I was interested in working with Michael Jackson’s identity as a royal. He had a fascination with aristocracy, actively pushing forward his own title “The King of Pop”. His union with Lisa-Marie Presley was not unlike an old world joining of royal families, uniting with the daughter of the King of Rock and Roll. Michael was famously photographed in an elaborate golden throne which I looked to for inspiration. Similar to paintings of Napoleon or Louis IV, I want this to feel like a monumental portrait of the King.“ , https://www.juxtapoz.com/news/music/sound-and-vision-michael-jackson-s-dangerous-cover-artwork-by-mark-ryden/
  2. Greene, Robert, THE 48 LAWS OF POWER, auction house Bonhams. 1998, A Joost Elfers Production. The book was in Michael Jackson’s possession, and the handwritten notes on the Sun King’s image were written by him. In 2011 the book was sold at an auction. A Penguin Book, https://www.bonhams.com/auctions/19036/lot/262/
  3. Greene, Robert, THE 48 LAWS OF POWER, auction house Bonhams. 1998, A Joost Elfers Production
  4. Jackson, Michael, Moonwalk, 1988: „Captain EO is about transformation and the way music can help to change the world. George came up with the name Captain EO. (Eo is Greek for „dawn.“) The story is about a young guy who goes on a mission to this miserable planet run by an evil queen. He is entrusted with the responsibility of bringing the inhabitants light and beauty. It’s a great celebration of good over evil.“ , Wilhelm Heyne Verlag, München

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