Bill Clinton is not a fan of one of his presidential portraits — for good reason!
The artwork — which is currently in rotation at the National Portrait Gallery in Washington D.C. — contains a subtle nod to the former head of state's mid-1990s affair with White House intern, Monica Lewinsky.
According to the painting's artist, Nelson Shanks, the barely noticeable dress-shaped shadow in the image's background is an allusion to the "literal shadow" the scandal cast on Bill's legacy.
(Photo Credit: R/R)
"The reality is he's probably the most famous liar of all time," Shanks, 77, explained in a new interview. "He and his administration did some very good things, of course, but I could never get this Monica thing completely out of my mind and it is subtly incorporated in the painting."
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Shanks — who has previously created portraits of Ronald Reagan and Princess Diana, among others — painted the 42nd president, 68, at a NYC studio in 2005.
(Photo Credit: Philadelphia Daily News)
"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," he added.
According to Shanks, both Bill and Hillary Clinton "hate" the portrait. "They want it removed from the National Portrait Gallery. They're putting a lot of pressure on them,” he said.
Shanks spoke to 'Philadelphia Daily News.'
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