Meet Donald Trump’s $20,000 Jewish Speed Painter - Michael Israel

Meet Donald Trump’s $20,000 Jewish Speed Painter

Michael Israel Art Studios Statement

Jewish Speed PainterThe speed-painter and “performer,” Michael Israel, recently found a creation he made 10 years ago at the forefront of a political controversy, involving of course, none other than Donald Trump.

Back in 2007, Trump and his wife Melania attended a charity hosted by HomeSafe, which helps homeless and abused children, at Mar-a-Lago, Trump’s private estate in Palm Beach.

In anticipation of the couple’s attendance, HomeSafe commissioned Israel to “live- paint” a portrait of Trump and then auction it off, which is how the artist usually operates and handles his works. Israel is regularly asked by non-profits and places like the JCC, AIPAC and synagogues to perform. He has painted such famous figures as Albert Einstein and Muhammad Ali, and is currently in talks with AIPAC about providing a painting for its national meeting in D.C.

His act includes such flair as spinning and flipping the canvas during the five to seven minutes it takes him to complete a painting. This way, the audience remains rapt as to whom the subject will turn out to be. When Israel turns the painting right side up, the crowd gasps, he said.

“By the time I’m done with my show, I’m in Never-Never-Land. Usually I leave the room for the auction and try to chill out,” he said.

But for some reason, he decided to stay while people bid on his Trump piece. Melania put her paddle up at $10,000, and nobody tried to outbid her.

“Do you know what just happened? No one wants to bid against you and it’s only fair you should double your bid,” Israel recalled the auctioneer saying.

The painting sold for $20,000 to the Trumps. Afterward, Melania approached Israel and critiqued him for not fine-tuning the painting and missing some nuances, like small details in the face.

Now, ten years later, the Trump painting has resurfaced to scandal. The Washington Post recently ran an investigation that found, among other things, the Trump Foundation purchased things “that seemed to benefit only Trump.”

According to the article, the Trump Foundation checked ‘no’ on its IRS form when asked if it had “furnish[ed] goods, services or facilities” to Trump or another of its officers?”

Today, both Melania’s nitpicking and Donald’s alleged improprieties don’t seem to have fazed Israel.

“Yes I admire Trump for his accomplishments. Trump is an icon. He is a part of American history. He is every bit the icon, as anyone I paint,” he said.

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  • Ethan Marek

    Michael Israel Art Studios Statement

    Trump Painting Saves Abused Women and Children!

    Michael Israel, a famous speed painter, is renowned for using his art to bring attention and money to worthy causes.

    Surrounding the now famous Trump painting, on the night in question, 5 artworks were painted on stage then auctioned to benefit Home Safe, a charity that prevents and protects women, children, and infants from abuse. 5 artworks painted, 6 artworks SOLD! Melania Trump won the bid for a portrait of Donald.

    The controversy? Home Safe charity was paid with a Trump Foundation check. If the Trumps kept the painting for themselves, for instance, in their home, it would be self-serving. It is our understanding the mission of charitable foundations is to give money to help charities. They did! The money paid for the painting did help prevent and protect children and women from abuse. Now with all the media attention, the artwork’s place in history is assured and it is likely an excellent artwork investment for the Trump Foundation (If the Foundation kept it) or any charity the Trump Foundation might have donated it to!

    A personal message to Donald and Melania Trump,

    THANK YOU for your support of Home Safe… and my work! I have more for sale 😉

    Live in Color!

    Michael Israel

    P.S. – President Obama and Hillary Clinton have talked about my 6-ft painting… I wonder if they would like me to paint a 6-ft portrait for them too! If you speak with either, please let them know they might get a deal on my work at a sanctioned charity event or a painting can be commissioned at my standard rate by contacting my studio

    P.P.S. I am thrilled my art has once again hit the world’s stage! I am thrilled it has made more of a positive difference in people’s lives than simply matching the couch. I am dismayed but unfortunately not surprised it is being used to make negative statements as well.

    P.P.P.S. My art is pro-America and hugely patriotic! I paint tributes to Freedom, First Responders, Police, Military, and important causes!

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