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Ivanka Trump Responds To Look-Alike Who Cleans Crumbs As Part Of Art Exhibit

While ‘art imitates life’ is very common, it appears that anti-mimesis, where ‘life imitates art,’ may also be coming true.

A performance art-exhibit called ‘Ivanka Vacuuming’ by artist Jennifer Rubell is perhaps the former. However, the response to her art would definitely prove Oscar Wilde true, when he said: “life imitates art far more than art imitates life.”

The art piece is defined as being “simultaneously a visual celebration of a contemporary feminine icon; a portrait of our own relationship to that figure; and a questioning of our complicity in her role-playing.” The art is an experience piece: On entering the gallery space, viewers will notice a woman bearing a striking resemblance to that Ivanka, cleaning a plush pink carpet. In front of this scene is a white pedestal with a giant pile of crumbs on top. The public is invited to throw crumbs onto the carpet, watching as Ivanka elegantly vacuums up the mess, her smile never wavering. This process repeats itself for the entire duration of the performance.
Why does this read like a commentary of Ivanka Trump constantly cleaning up her father, Donald J. Trump’s messes? As much as we don’t want to define art or limit its interpretation, that seems to be the general consensus that everyone has picked up on, because in the piece, the mess is very literal and visually out there.

However, Rubell, the artist, has in an interview opened up the ‘interpretation’ about the piece. “The crumbs, they could symbolize a lot of things, said Rubell. “The cheapness of our appreciation of her. Her desire to clean things up. It’s extremely open-ended and open to many different interpretations. It could say is that we’re all complicit in this dynamic and how it relates to feminism and femininity.”

After the exhibit started picking up traction, both Trump and her brothers Donald Trump Jr and Eric Trump criticized the exhibit on Tuesday as a sexist attempt to humiliate her.

Ivanka, however, had a different response.

Art imitates life, or life imitates art? Your call.

The artist, Rubell, responded to Ivanka’s tweet, saying that she would invite her to viewing and encourage her for her direct response on it.

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Updated: February 6, 2019 — 9:12 am
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