Saturday, March 14, 2020

Jared Kushner channels Dorian Gray

Season two of the Netflix series Dirty Money debuted on Netflix this month with the first episode a profile of President Donald Trump's son-in-law and top White House advisor, Jared Kushner. Titled, “Slumlord Millionaire”, it's directed by Morgan Pehme and Dan DiMauro, who also made the fabulous documentary Get Me Roger Stone. I was interviewed for the episode.

I drew over 50 covers for the New York Observer during Jared Kushner's ten year reign as it's publisher, and I'd also met him on several occasions, one of which I discuss in the film. I was filmed creating this illustration of Kushner channeling Oscar Wilde's Dorian Gray, with the exposed picture/painting, Jared's father-in-law Donald J. Trump.

I'd thought for years that Jared looked like the young, handsome, emotionless actor Hurd Hatfield, who played Dorian Gray in the 1946 MGM film version, and was toying for awhile with the idea of drawing him posed as Dorian but couldn’t figure out a clever twist. One of the filmmakers suggested that Trump himself  be the horrible visage seen in the aging painting hidden away in Dorian’s attic, perhaps as an analogy to what Jared Kushner's soul is evolving into, or, well, make of it what you will. That idea clicked with me, thus the drawing which can be seen in the documentary.