Monday 17 June 2019

'Some people are foaming at the mouth' - Irish artist behind controversial Donald Trump/KKK cover for The Economist

The latest cover of The Economist
The latest cover of The Economist
Kathy Armstrong

Kathy Armstrong

The Irish artist behind the controversial latest cover of The Economist has admitted he's not a fan of US President Donald Trump.

President Trump was criticised for his response to last weekend's racially-charged protests in Charlottesvile, Virginia last weekend, when he said that groups protesting against white supremacists were also "very violent".

Irish illustrator Jon Berkeley
Irish illustrator Jon Berkeley

After two days the president condemned white supremacist groups by name on Monday, declaring "racism is evil".

The latest edition of The Economist's bears a cartoon version of Trump holding a white megaphone, which resembles the white masks worn by the Ku Klux Klan.

Dubliner Jon Berkeley is behind the powerful image, which has been shared thousands of times online overnight.

Jon (54) told "News jobs usually have a quick turnaround, and sometimes a tighter deadline produces the best results.

"My process if that I sit down with a pencil and start doodling anything that comes to mind for that topic, so in this case Swastikas, the KKK, Trump and confederate flags.

"The whole thing took about two to three hours."

President Donald Trump speaks in the lobby of Trump Tower
President Donald Trump speaks in the lobby of Trump Tower

Read More: Nazi salutes, KKK hoods: Donald Trump will not be happy about these prominent magazines’ new covers

Mr Berkeley - whose work has been previously featured in publications including The Irish Independent, GQ, Radio Times and the LA Times - said that he wasn't worried about the potential backlash from Trump supporters or white supremacists.

Mr Berkeley, who lives in Spain, said: "I had a feeling there would be a lot of reaction, already this topic has been talked about a lot online and it's quite a barbed cover.

"Plus the covers of publications like Time magazine and The Economist tend to garner a lot of interest.

"I wasn't really worried, geographically I'm quite far away at least.

"In my opinion any reaction is good and scrolling through The Economist's Facebook page, the comments are quite polarised - there are some people foaming at the mouth and others who approved.

"I'm not a supporter of Trump, I think he has been a disaster."

For more information about Jon's work please visit here.

Read More: Donald Trump in civil war with his own party over confederate monuments

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