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Here’s How Gallery-Goers Feel About Donald Trump’s Micropenis Portrait

The painting, which depicts The Donald with a very small penis, was blocked on Facebook and banned from public display in the US, so a London gallery is exhibiting it instead. We asked some people who'd seen it what they thought.

by Drew Schwartz
Apr 12 2016, 3:51pm

All Illma Gore wanted to do was make people think. But the LA-based artist—whose nude portrait of Donald Trump with a microscopically-small penis went viral in March—wound up getting way more than she bargained for.

After posting an image of her piece "Make America Great Again" on Facebook, the social media site forced her to remove it and blocked her from accessing her account. She offered the portrait to galleries across the US, but no one would take it after it was banned from public display. Soon, she started receiving death threats from Trump fanatics.

Gore's artwork has finally found a home in Mayfair's Maddox Gallery, London, where the public can drop by and do exactly what Gore wanted them to do: take a look and think about it. I stopped by yesterday to have a gander myself, and bumped into the artist on the gallery floor. "The idea was to evoke a reaction," she said. "You don't have to like it, you don't have to agree with it, but if it makes you think, that's art."

Once I was done thinking, I asked a few other patrons what they thought of Gore's piece.

Matt, 41

VICE: Why did you feel the need to come down here and actually see the piece in person?
Matt:
I just wanted to see how big it was—or not, as the case may be.

How tiny is that thing? What would you compare it to?
I'd say the tip of a chipolata party sausage, but maybe like a very cold version of that that got very shy.

Why do you think the artist made the piece?
Obviously there's the publicity. I do think it's a really good representation of a man with a huge ego and not a lot downstairs, perhaps. Or upstairs. [Penis size] is really kind of all he cares about, so we're seeing the ugly truth. No matter how big or small.

Marcus, 31

How tiny is that thing? What would you compare it to?
Marcus: It's very small. It's a bit like a button mushroom.

But maybe less appetizing.
Maybe, yeah. It's a bit purple and pink for my liking.

Feel you on that. Why'd you decide to come down and see it in person?
I was kind of amazed that it was here. It's been all over the internet in the past week or two, so I was just interested to see what all the fuss was about.

Absolutely. People have sent the artist death threats, the painting's been banned by Facebook—what do you think of all that hubbub, and what do you think it says about Trump and his supporters?
To be honest, I think it's quite good, because people have become even more animated about it. I didn't know it'd been banned. I'm actually quite amazed by that—surely that's not democratic?

What do you think the artist is saying?
I don't know. Possibly showing how vulnerable we all are when we're... nude?

You're just making stuff up.
Yeah.

It's cool. Would you hang this in your house?
Oh yeah, for sure.

Where?
Probably in full view, so that people going past could see it when they were looking in.

Nice.

Marcos, 30

So how tiny is that thing?
Marcos: Oh, it's incredibly tiny. I couldn't imagine one smaller than that.

What would you compare it to?
I don't know—it's like a small ant or something.

People sent the artist death threats, Facebook had an image of it removed from their site—all in all, pretty serious stuff. What do you think about all that backlash?
It's always bad when you have your idol—the guy you want to be president—to be painted like that. But we're in a free world; we can paint people any way we like. For me, it's art. Art must be free.

Profound. Would you hang this in your house?
No.

Why not?
That's ridiculous. I don't like this guy, I don't want to wake up and see his face in my house.

Hugh, 23

So how tiny is it? What would you compare it to?
Hugh: It sort of looks a bit like a frightened turtle going into its shell—quite a big, massive shell, in the form of Donald Trump.

What do you think it says about that shell of a man? Has it changed your perception of him at all?
No, he's still a nob. He's just a small nob.

Why did you feel the need to come down here and actually see it in person?
It's about the scale. You can see an image of it, but you don't know how big it really is. Also, I'm a massive cock fan. Had to see how big it was.

Quoting you on that. Would you hang this in your home?
Maybe in my bathroom. Just to... compare.

Fair enough. Would you recommend that other people come down here and check this out?
Yeah, definitely. It's going to be one of those things in history that you look back on. It could be the new "Mona Lisa."

Brenton, 43

So how tiny is that thing?
Brenton: It's pretty tiny. I'd compare it to a small little mushroom.

How has this changed what you think of Donald Trump?
I'm not a fan. To be honest, I didn't think much of him in the first place, and this hasn't really made much difference.

What do you think of all the controversy that surrounds this painting?
It just gives it more publicity, doesn't it? It's quite funny that it's been banned and taken so seriously [in the US]. People are protective of Donald Trump, so I guess they're making threats to try to keep it quiet. But that's only going to make it worse for them.

Jessica, 30

What made you want to come down here and check it out?
Jessica: It just looked so disturbing in pictures, and I wanted to see it in person.

So you wanted to be disturbed?
Yes.

And did that happen for you?
Yeah, I'd say so.

Why was it disturbing?
Just to see the expression on his face and, of course, his micro-penis. It's not really wide enough to be a chode, I don't think. It looks like a growth. Like more of a swelling—like a wart, or something—than a functional organ.

That's poetic. So the artist has received death threats, and "Make America Great Again" has been banned in the US. What do you make of all that?
I think it's nuts. They're supposed to have freedom of speech in America, and freedom of expression. So why is it banned? That's insanity to me. Why can't you have a dissenting opinion? It just shows how nuts his supporters are, that they'd even go to this extreme in the first place.

What do you think the artist is trying to say?
I think to show his vanity, and just how grotesque he is on the inside and the outside. The fact that he needs to bring his penis into debates is... ugh.

Would you hang this in your home?
Yeah, I absolutely would. Possibly in the bathroom, so you could enjoy it while you're taking a dump or something.

Has this changed what you think of The Donald?
No, not really. I already hated him and I still hate him, but now I guess I have to picture his penis when I look at him. Which is not what you want to do.

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