DALLAS — Former President George W. Bush completed a series of paintings this week honoring heroic scene veterans from various punk and hardcore communities around the country, according to sources close to the 43rd president.
“This country owes a great debt to the promoters, performers, crowd-killer-killers, and screenprinters alike,” said Anita Duggan, Bush’s spokeswoman. “In painting these brave men and women, thousands around the country will be able to catch a glimpse into their stories about when the scene was good, or about when ‘punk actually meant something.’”
Many of the paintings’ subjects — including hardcore scene vets from different sub-genres all over North America — expressed hesitation at posing for a portrait from the former President, but were eventually swayed by promises of “unity,” “justice,” and “$500 travel vouchers.”
“You know, the old guy ain’t half bad,” said Curtis Dell, ex-frontman of the popular ’90s Cincinnati hardcore band Trust Fall. “Back in the day, I was all about, ‘Bush is a war criminal,’ ‘no blood for oil,’ and all that shit. But after a few sessions with him, I changed my tune. Ex-prez is dope. He’s really a guy you can see yourself drinking a beer with, if he still drank.”
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Dell’s portrait will be hung in the gallery alongside the likes of John Joseph, John Brannon, and a man referenced only as “Johnny from Cleve-O,” who, according to Dell, “once kicked a guy in the nuts so hard that he puked for two hours straight.”
President Bush, who has been on a media tour in recent weeks promoting the art exhibition, was visibly excited to debut his latest work.
“I know every person I painted, whether I listened to their band, attended one of their shows, or ordered enamel pins from them,” said Bush during an interview on NBC’s Today. “I was thinking of their demos, their zines, and the fights they got in outside of venues while I made their portrait. But the most important thing I want people to know, is that I’m also available to do layouts and cover art, if any bands would like that. My rates are real low while I’m trying to build a name for myself.”