Look, I don’t want to say Hunter Biden’s artwork is terrible because I’ve got just enough redneck in me to simply not understand how a bunch of dots and splotches could cost half a million dollars.
“It’s art,” says someone who knows about these things.
“It looks like an embolism,” I respond.
Art, of course, is in the eye of the beholder and Biden, who is being roundly, and probably fairly, criticized for the lousy optics of charging a poo-ton of money to fancy people who could be paying big bucks to weasel into a meeting with Daddy has painted himself into a corner. If he sells these “works of art” to super rich “mystery buyers” as was announced last month, it just seems … skeevy.
There’s a nagging feeling no one is ever going to hang that in their home and wait for a visitor to say, “Ahhh, you have a good eye; it is a Biden.”
Hunter Biden is besieged with controversy, mostly of his own making. But he wouldn’t be the first son of a powerful person to drift off course before turning to art as therapy.
Prince Charles, for example. After famously philandering and failing at fatherhood in the early days and embittered by the realization his polo pony had a better chance of ever becoming king, Charles sought solace in painting. His art, unlike Biden’s is mostly watercolors of things you can identify like “boat on lake” and “field of flowers.” I’m guessing these resonate with the type of art collector that prefers a little less aortic valve replacement over their mantel.
It’s like Thomas Kincaide without the lighted up waterfall thing going on. Soothing, even.
Famous son George W. Bush, a Gentleman’s D of a presidency behind him, returned home to Texas where he took to painting portraits like a duck to…hot pavement. I suspect Poppy Bush must have cocked an eyebrow when he saw some of that early work.
The first time I saw W’s “art,” I admit to wondering if everyone had gone Emperor’s New Clothes on him. (“Yes, George, it’s just wonderful! Who says everyone needs a chin, after all? So edgy!”)
“Son, I’m not sure that’s Tom Hanks, looks more like Roseanne,” I imagine Poppy Bush saying while softly swirling a fine brandy in its snifter.
That said, I’m happy to report W’s artwork has improved dramatically since those early days post presidency when Laura, no doubt, must’ve said, “George, surely there’s some brush you can clear down in Crawford,” as she firmly resisted his pleas to hang his mildly harrowing portrait of her in the den.
I’m pretty sure (art) history at least will be kind to George W. Bush.
It should be noted that both W and Prince Charles donate the proceeds from the sale of their artworks to charity, which is laudable as all get out. One would hope Hunter Biden would do the same, but I don’t see that happening. Biden, like many a tortured soul before him, discovered his, er, talent while in rehab. No shame in that. The shame only kicks in when you realize he wants $240,000 for what looks suspiciously like the spin art I made at the State Fair back in the 70s.
Celebrities think they can do it all. Isn’t it enough for Miley Cyrus to be an amazing singer, songwriter and performer? Do we have to admire her new 3D artworks?
“It’s empowering!” says someone who knows about these things.
“It looks like a macaroni wall plaque you make in Vacation Bible School,” I replied. “And not the good kind where you center the plastic grapes on paper plate but the kind that looks like it was done by a 3-year-old who put all the macaroni up his nose and sneezed.
Don’t get any ideas, Hunter.