Justice

What Just Happened to the Artist Who Painted Donald Trump Naked Is Even Scarier Than the Painting

May 4th 2016

By:
Lucy Tiven

Feminist artist Ilma Gore, 24, is no stranger to controversy, and she has faced a barrage of social media abuse from supporters of Republican front-runner Donald Trump since her nude painting of Trump with a micropenis went viral on Facebook earlier this year. On Friday, the artist's critics took their threats up a notch: Gore alleges that a Trump supporter physically attacked her in Los Angeles.

On Saturday, Gore shared a selfie of a black-eye on Instagram, alleging that she was assaulted by a Trump supporter near her home.

 

Today I was punched in the face by a man who got out of his car and yelled, "Trump 2016!" in Los Angeles, just days after I returned home from London just down the road from my house. Though I encourage passion, opinion and emotion, especially though art, I think violence is disgusting. To live in a place where Facebook has given my address to an anonymous third party makes me feel like I am homeless again. This type of violence makes creatives feel like we live in a world where our individual creative input isn't safe. I am sad that this is the state of our America right now. I am sad that Trump, and many of his supporters, don't find words enough to express their opinions - they need walls, waterboarding and punches. @realdonaldtrump Please stop glamorizing and perpetuating violence. Make America Decent Again! #makeamericadecentagain No, they have not been caught, and the men drove off laughing. A detailed police report has been filed.

A photo posted by Illma Gore (@illmagore) on

 

ATTN: spoke to the artist on the phone about the incident, which she explained happened on Friday, around 12:40 p.m.

"I have been receiving a lot threats of violence through social media, and in my inbox since the image of the artwork [of Donald Trump] went viral," Gore explained. "I've had a couple of people yell out, or notice who I am because of the image, or because of my tattoos."

"I'd been home from London for about a week, and I was walking to the art store by my house," she said. "I was actually walking on a through street, from a main road."

Gore continued:

"And as I walking, a car of guys yelled out slurs and yelled out 'Trump 2016' and that was what I heard, audibly, and I started texting my girlfriend and told her about it. I just ignored it, because it's happened before, so it's not too odd. Then, they pulled over in front of me, about 20 feet in front of me after driving past and I continued to ignore them and walk. They weren't yelling anything [then], they just pulled over, and when I went to walk past the car, one of the guys got out of the passenger seat and hit me, and yelled 'Trump 2016' and they all laughed and drove off."

Afterwards, Gore told ATTN: that she went to a Culver City police station, but they told her to go to a different Los Angeles station, where she ultimately filed a detailed police report.

She claims Trump is "glamorizing and perpetuating violence."

"It’s scary to think — in this day and age — that any artist who uses their artwork to speak could be just hit for it," Gore told ATTN:. But she also saw a particular pattern of violence among Trump supporters.

"I think there is a lot of really angry Trump supporters, and I feel like Donald Trump himself is inciting the violence, the way he is saying 'if you attack one of these protesters, I'll pay your legal fees.' I can’t help but feel that it's a direct link to that," Gore said.

"It's personally kind of embarrassing for me to post something like that on social media because I knew there would be a lot of backlash," Gore added, "but the fact that there's someone out there who thinks that sort of casual violence is okay, is super frightening to me. So that was more important."

Some of Gore's critics have accused her of "asking" to be physically harmed, according to artist. Others have alleged that she was lying about being assaulted.

"It’s sad people say that I deserve this, because I painted him and disrespected him, when Donald Trump is literally a racist and is disrespectful to people," she told ATTN:.

This isn't the first time Gore has faced disturbing responses from Trump supporters. After her painting "Make America Great Again" went viral on Facebook in February, she "received thousands of death threats" that led her to flee to the U.K., according to an April report on the Guardian. An anonymous Digital Millennium Copyright Act was also filed against Gore, which led social media pages to censor the painting and eBay to de-list it, the Guardian reported.

She told ATTN: that she took the painting to Europe after she received "really, violent, detailed threats" including death and rape threats. Galleries were also worried about the safety of displaying the in the U.S., she explained.

"I really think it is because of the way Trump is glamorizing violence," Gore said of the incident.

Trump has repeatedly come under fire due to the culture of violence surrounding his campaign.

"I think it's just kind of indicative of where we are and where America is," she added. "It's so sad to see how many people are being hurt; it's so many protesters, even on Donald Trump’s side are getting hurt. And I've never seen that in an election."

Gore is not the first person to accuse Trump of encouraging his supporters to take justice into their own hands when faced with protesters and Trump detractors.

In late March, Twitter users created the hashtag #SaferThanATrumpRally to satirically point out the hazards of these campaign events, compared to comparably safe activities like driving off a cliff, and drinking water from the city of Flint.

As ATTN: has previously reported, at a March GOP debate, CNN moderator Jake Tapper asked Trump if he encouraged a culture of violence against protesters at his rallies.

Trump responded that his supporters "have anger that’s unbelievable. They love this country." He also maintained that he hadn't witnessed any violence personally. "I heard about it, which I don’t like," he added.

Earlier in the campaign, protester was sucker-punched at Trump rally in North Carolina, and former Breitbart reporter Michelle Fields alleged that Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski grabbed her violently after a press conference, while she was trying to ask the candidate a question. As ATTN: has previously reported, from a Las Vegas rally, the GOP front-runner also said he would like to punch a protester in the face.

Just this weekend, Trump supporters and protesters clashed violently at California campaign events — which illustrated how tensions have escalated among Trump and anti-Trump camps alike.

Still, the painter maintained that she isn't going anywhere — even if Trump is our next president.

"I definitely will be staying here, and I will be staying here if Trump is elected as president," she told ATTN:, but added that she's taking precautions to protect her own safety.

"I painted Donald Trump nude, so I knew there was going to be some sort of reaction from people, I wasn't sure what that was," Gore explained. "But I've always told my friends and those around me that if it did lead to some sort of violence then it did, and I would stand by it and tell the truth, and be honest."

You can read more about "Make America Great Again" and see more of Illma Gore's work on her website.

[h/t PAPER]