• 4.5.17

    Sam Hadley Gets Romantic with Billionaires

    It’s not question that everyone following the Presidential election of 2016 with any interest was surprised when the results came in, and since that Tuesday night every pundit and analyst has created their own angle from which to view “what happened.” At the Village Voice they used the perhaps unexpected lens of Romance Novels. After all, the election happened at the same time that Billionaire focused romance reached its height, and the readers that these are most popular with ultimately swung the election in the direction it went. It may not be why the election went the way it did, but its certainly a window into a possibility. To pair with the piece, the newspaper invited illustrator Sam Hadley to create an image that played on the themes of the reporting while offering something new.

    The resulting piece from Hadley features President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump painted in the style of mass market romance paperback covers. They fall together in an embrace in front of The White House, Mrs Trump wrapped up in the American flag like a dress. Sam has also included a gold gilded frame around the image to remind us, if the couple wasn’t enough, that this is about money.

    The argument made in The Village Voice is that at a time of economic uncertainty, at a time when the burden of breadwinning has become more gender balanced while housework is still unbalanced, there’s a impulse for middle class caucasian women to fantasize about the security that comes with financial excess. These voracious readers are reminded at the end of every story that it is, in fact, a fantasy, one only seen in the equally tawdry and morally superior pages of these novels. But there is a value in these beautiful escapes, like the one created by Sam Hadley, even if they don’t look like the truth.

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