Once again one of my live on-stage 6-ft paintings has found it’s way into the national limelight!
Amazingly, this past Sept 11, it’s not “Hero” My 9/11 tribute, that is in the media!
I was thrilled to speak with reporters who called about my artwork. I’m always happy to talk about Home Safe, a 501c3 charity that I have been a long time supporter of, and how gracious Melania Trump was in bidding on the artwork for Home Safe!
I do a lot of charity fundraisers, and patriotic tributes to soldiers, police, and firefighters… even Presidential portraits but always focus on America and not on politics.
It has been 10-years! I still remember that night. I’m always in hyper-overdrive after performing five 6-ft paintings and disappear during the auction after my show to relax.
I’m grateful I am able to give far more with my paintbrushes and canvas then I can with a pen and my checkbook, but still find it hard to watch whenever my paintings are auctioned low. Knowing my artwork helps those less fortunate instead of how much it sells for always warms my heart. That night I stayed!
Bidding started well. Then Melania bid $10,000…. and the rest of the room stopped!
The auctioneer was quick-witted and gutsy, and I don’t remember exactly what he said, but it was something like…
“Mrs. Trump, thank you for your bid, but everyone else has stopped bidding! No one will bid against you, so I think it is only fair that you double your bid.”
and she graciously doubled her bid to $20,000!
After the show and auction, we took a photo together with Donald; then Melania wanted to discuss the nuances of the painting. She was elegant, intelligent, and articulate.
Aaarrrrggggh! Reporters have asked for a picture of the artwork. The only photos I had of the artwork were on a computer that died some years ago. LOL… no cloud backups back then. If anyone does find photos, I’d love a copy.
Reporters have been searching for the artwork and have asked me to describe the artwork and what I wanted viewers to understand from seeing it.
People using my well-meant artwork as a tool in a debate on how the Trump Foundation is financed and spends its funds is not what I envisioned when I painted it.
I paint iconic images to inspire and motivate people. Donald Trump is a global icon known for “The Art of the Deal’ and making failed ventures great. He’s loud and boastful as are many other iconic figures the world loves and hates.
People quickly point to Trump’s failures, but like so many icons, it is not how many times you fall, its how many times you get back up! He has been to the top, fallen, and risen again on a grand scale.
Today, with all that is going on in America and the rest of the world, I am especially disappointed that the media has not given attention to HomeSafe and my patriotic performances and inspirational charitable artwork.
All of us in America could use some uplifting. We need less fighting among ourselves and more focus on America, and life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness for all people! : )
Let’s bring that message to Americans and to the world!
Q: Did Trump hire you for the event?
N: No, Home Safe contacted us to help raise money for their mission.
Q: Why did you paint Trump?
A: He is a global icon and the event was at Mar a Lago so, it made sense.
Q: Is $20,000 high for one of your paintings?
A: No, but it’s not bad for some charity events. I dedicate a number of works to a number of charities each year, then it’s pretty much anything goes for the charity. Today, my studio price for a first-time work on a canvas like the Trump portrait is $150,000.00, it was lower at the time of the event. Works have sold for $250,000, they have also sold at charity events for a lot less. People know they can “steal” an artwork at a charity event and do good for the charity so, collectors often wait for such an event rather than buying directly from my studio. That will change when I retire from touring and stop doing so many charity events.
Q: Do you know where the painting is?
A: I’ve heard rumors but never gotten confirmation. I always ask collectors to send photos of their artwork once it has been hung. Few people follow up. It’s hard to follow an artwork’s history once it is out of your hands.