A rather ghoulish but well-endowed politician—arguably Canada’s most powerful conservative—stands spread eagle with six sagging breasts dangling from his torso.
Big Dicked Kenney Soaked in Oil is the second painting in a series of nudes by Edmonton-based artist, Tim Mikula, priced at $300 or best offer before it sold on Kijiji.
In the piece’s description on Kijiji, Mikula wrote he’s lucky he gets to paint Alberta’s premier, Jason Kenney, a “hero, savior, adonis.”
“I felt like implying that he has a small dick is body-shame-y and a cheap shot, so I went the other way and gave him a gigantic dick,” Mikula said in an interview. “He has a big dick so he can swing it like a backwards clock and take us backwards.”
Before his provincial appointment, Kenney served as a member of parliament for nearly two decades. He held several cabinet appointments during his tenure as a federal politician.
Now, Kenney’s unofficial title is “muse.”
Mikula, 30, runs a quasi-digital art gallery on Kijiji under the username “ABLegGiftShop,” where art aficionados can purchase his work. Six Kenney portraits makeup Mikula’s oeuvre, including: Nude Jason Kenney Floating Over Pile of Skulls w/ Legislature in Background; Jason Kenney, Haunted AF-Possible Horcrux?; and—my personal favourite—Semi-Nude Jason Kenney Clutching Barrel of Oil. Satirical commentary accompanies each one.
Kenney Clutching Barrel details fictional interactions between Alberta’s premier and investors working in oil and gas. Mikula compares the province's early oil boom days to a steep ascent towards the Sun. But recent economic downturns—namely, the unstable price of oil—ultimately left Alberta's energy sector in a hopeless, gravity-lacking state.
“Kenney sits at the helm of this metaphor,” Mikula writes. “Naked save an I <3 Canadian Oil and Gas hoodie to conceal his six withered breasts and a pair of flip flops. He’s like a less charming Gollum.”
Mikula initially asked for $30 million for Kenney Clutching Barrel. A customer offered $500 and he took it.
“I’m honestly as surprised as anyone,” Mikula said with a laugh.
Mikula first started painting Alberta’s head elected honcho after losing a job as a columnist at a local paper. He said Kijiji gave him a platform to write freely and sell his art.
Now, he’s making “way more money” through Kijiji than he did working for a newsroom.
Mikula, however, did have to weather a weekendlong blackout when the site temporarily removed his artwork. Apparently, a user reported the paintings, which prompted Kijiji to act.
“All users are encouraged to flag listings they deem questionable. In combination with technology, our team investigates the flagged listings to determine the appropriate actions,” a Kijiji spokesperson said in an email.
Kijiji prohibits pornography, nude photos, videos, articles, erotic products, and “offensive and obscene behaviour,” according to the site’s policies.
“Some of my stuff is vaguely mature but I think it’s tastefully done, for the most part,” Mikula said.
After Mikula reached out to the Kijiji support team, the site let him reinstate the shop.
“As a dealer of my art and writing, Kijiji has been super supportive,” Mikula said.
Mikula has sold every advertised Kenney painting and is now fielding commissions. He gets paid anywhere between $200 and $500 per piece.
“Kenney is super lucrative,” Mikula said. “He’s making me rich!”
The only portrait that hasn’t been sold was a painting of Steve Allan—the man appointed to lead a public investigation into “anti-Alberta energy campaigns.”
“No one knows who the fuck he is,” Mikula said.
So the self-proclaimed “idiot with a paintbrush” will have to focus on his original conservative muse, starting with his next masterpiece that he said will evoke van Gogh's The Starry Night.
“The one I’m working on right now is Jason Kenney sitting in an inner tube in a tailings pond eating a dead duck that’s on his belly,” Mikula said.
The premier’s office did not respond to requests for comment.
Follow Anya Zoledziowski on Twitter.