President Bill Clinton’s portrait that hangs in the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C. features a hidden reference to Monica Lewinsky, according to the artist.
Artist Nelson Shanks, who has painted everyone from Princess Diana to Pope John Paul II, told Philly.com on Sunday that the painting has a shadow to the left of Clinton that is a representation of Lewinsky’s infamous blue dress.
[quote text_size=”small” author=”– Nelson Shanks” author_title=”Portrait artist”]
It actually literally represents a shadow from a blue dress that I had on a mannequin, that I had there while I was painting it, but not when he was there. It is also a bit of a metaphor in that it represents a shadow on the office he held, or on him.
Shanks, who called Clinton “the most famous liar of all time,” placed a mannequin in a blue dress to cast a shadow on the mantle in a recreation in his studio. The president and the mannequin were never in the room together, according to ABC News.
Clinton had an affair with White House intern Lewinsky during his presidency. He was impeached by the House on charges of lying under oath about the relationship and for obstruction of justice. The blue Gap dress Lewinsky wore had DNA on it that was matched to Clinton, according to USA Today.
According to Shanks, the Bill and Hilary Clinton knew about the shadow reference and have attempted to have the painting removed from the National Portrait Gallery, although the Gallery denies the claim.
What are your thoughts on this Bill Clinton portrait?