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Published On: Sat, Mar 23rd, 2019

Artist Julian Raven sues Smithsonian for rejected Trump portrait

Julian Raven is suing the Smithsonian for violating his freedom of speech.

Painter of the most recognized portrait of President Trump, Raven attempted to get the artwork featured at the Smithsonian at Trump’s inauguration in 2016.

Raven’s artwork was publicly supported in New York where he gained over 200 thousand signatures on a petition asking the Smithsonian to feature the portrait in their gallery. The petition included signatures from elected officials and many wrote letters of support, recommending that the painting be displayed at the time of the inauguration.

Raven went through all the proper channels of submitting his artwork to the Institute. Finding at each step of the way, that those with decision making power in the Smithsonian, just really do not like President Trump. After receiving a nasty phone call from Kim Sajet, the National Portrait Gallery Director, Raven was shocked at the way he was treated, he expressed to BLP.

Here are the issues and Raven’s rebuke:

The portrait was too big.: the Smithsonian hung a giant Obama portraits displayed for 2013 President Obama inauguration both around 6×8′, close to the size of the Trump painting.

The Trump portrait was not “taken from life”: the Smithsonian hung the famous “Hope” portrait of Barrack Obama that definitely was not “taken from life” as street artist Shepherd Fairey was convicted for lying about photoshopping an original AP photo to create the iconic Obama poster.

The Trump portrait was “too pro-Trump” and “too political”: While “both Hillary and Obama’s 2008 political art was accepted and/or displayed at the National Portrait Gallery establishing legal precedent for political free speech to be expressed at the portrait gallery,” the Trump portrait was deemed “too political”.

The Smithsonian Folk Art Museum was fine with hanging the painting of Donald Trump getting punched by the Statue of Liberty.

the Smithsonian is perfectly fine with hanging any damaging artwork towards Donald Trump as the painting below was accepted into The Smithsonian Folk Art Museum.

Judge Trevor McFadden of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia dismissed Raven’s initial lawsuit on the grounds that the museum enjoys “what amounts to complete discretion in choosing portraits.”

“The First Amendment simply does not apply to government art selections, no matter how arbitrary,” Judge McFadden wrote in the memorandum dismissing Raven’s charge.

“It’s been a very uncertain and oftentimes very discouraging journey that did affect negatively my art career,” Raven said to the Daily Beast. “My art sales just took a nosedive.”

Here’s how the left replied: “I salute the National Portrait Gallery, who declined to comment to the Daily Beast due to the lawsuit, for sticking to their guns (both metaphorically, and the guns they are allowed to have because of the Second Amendment). By declining to display this work, they have protected the civil liberties of my eyes, as well as clamping down on the scourge of “fake news” — in this case, Raven’s rendering of the President’s hairline as healthy and naturalistic. Meanwhile, I think conservatives would agree that Raven’s outspoken desire to have his shitty painting lauded is the kind of basic millennial cry for a participation trophy that is tearing this country apart. That guy should really learn to pull himself up by his bootstraps.” – Sarah Rose Sharp

About the Author

- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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