Say goodbye to Bush’s clueless approach to art and artists

In Philadelphia on Saturday, the Union League Club, which has 23 presidential portraits in its collection, unveiled their new portrait of George W. Bush. Birmingham artist Mark Carder told Everything Alabama reporter Michael Huebner that he wasn’t trying to make a statement, nor was he trying to capture a presidential attitude. “What I do in all my portraits is to try to stay out of it. I try to catch people the way they are. He came across as a real nice guy. He’s really down-to-earth when you meet with him one on one.”

Other politicians Carder has painted are Sen. Richard Shelby, former Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert and former Secretary of State James Baker. In 2002, he completed a portrait of George H.W. Bush and his wife Barbara that now hangs at the Bush Presidential Library and Museum in College Station, Texas. Preparing for the portrait, Carder spent several hours at the White House. “I was given full access and spent a Friday for about three hours and another couple of hours the following Wednesday meeting with the president and taking hundreds of photographs and doing studies,” he said.

At the unveiling, looking at the extremely conservative portrait, President Bush, who knows very little about any kind of art cracked wise. “I was taken aback by how much gray paint you had to use!” Carder’s portrait captures a hint of the Bush smirk, but the likeness shows far too much compassion for such an inept, pernicious president.

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  1. You sound like a too lovely person to spew venom on our president – or on any one else!

  2. It would really be nice to the artist, Mark Carder, if you could correct the several references to Huebner, who is actually the reporter, to the correct one of "Carder".
    We all make such boo boos but some time has passed since this was written and I wonder that no one has pointed that out.
    Carder does deserve the acknowledgement.

  3. I'm surprised that after all this time, no one has pointed out that there are 2 or more references to the artist as "Huebner", who is in fact the reporter in the article.

    It would be nice to correct all those references to the actual name of the artist "Mark Carder".

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