In light of recent attention Betsy DeVos received for a cartoonist’s depiction of her, the Secretary of Education has taken it upon herself to profit off of painted self-portraits. However, many have noticed that the portraits closely resemble those of famous feminist artist Frida Kahlo.
“Oh, I saw the parallels to Frida Kahlo’s paintings right away,” said concerned college student and occasional art browser Jaimie Frost, “It’s ridiculous how she can get away with it! Look, this one’s an exact rip off of Frida’s Two Hearts, but instead of Frida sitting next to her inner self, she’s sitting next to Secretary Betsy DeVos.”
DeVos is highly criticized for her inexperience and conservative views concerning education laws in America, including Title IX— which encompasses sexual discrimination.
In defense of her own portrayal as a Mexican feminist icon DeVos commented, “I do consider myself a fff… a person who understands and many a times agrees with the ladies! As I stated in my confirmation hearings in regards to Title IX, if necessary, I would look forward to working with senators and understand the range of opinion and understand the issues from the higher-ed institutions that are charged with resolving these and addressing them. And I would look forward to working together to find some resolutions.”
While having no immediate justification for inserting herself into artwork rich with Mexican culture (“It would be premature for me to do that today.”), DeVos feels that she at least connects with the genre of the paintings:
“While it is obvious that I relate to Frida as a respected woman, these paintings I made are technically classified under the umbrella of surrealism. And it sure feels surreal—though completely reasonable—that I am where I am today in America!”
The Secretary of Education has received plenty of backlash for her merchandise, especially because of her support of Trump and his budget cut proposals for the arts.
“The message these portraits are conveying about DeVos is flat out wrong, and the fact that she’s selling art at all is just plain ironic,” said public school art teacher Ilana Morris, “Will she even continue funding for arts education? I have my doubts.”
Though they reportedly will not be promoted on any major news networks, DeVos’s self-portraits can be found for sale on the White House website starting at $1,200 a piece.
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