I protest, therefore I am

What is an artist to do in these difficult and dangerous times? Sign petitions? Donate money? Write to newspapers? Done, done and done. But every morning, I am devastated anew by the realization of who currently occupies the White House. Several days into the new administration I was overtaken by a horrific premonition of where the president’s repulsive rhetoric could lead. In the space of two days, I painted the large canvas below. I thought perhaps I was too doomsday-ish, and I did not attempt to exhibit the piece.


Unfortunately, that was no mere premonition. My painting depicts what many people are feeling in the wake of recent events in Charlottesville and the political fallout. Hundreds of white nationalists marched through the University of Virginia campus carrying burning torches, spewing hatred and brandishing nazi salutes. Clashes with anti-hate groups resulted in the tragic death of a young woman, and ultimately the outing of the president’s true beliefs (no surprise there).

August’s TIME cover had a similar theme to the painting I completed seven months ago.


Artists all over the country and the world are picking up their brushes and their tools to protest this nightmarish period. I applaud my peers who give voice to their protest, and the audiences who look, listen and take heart.

10 thoughts on “I protest, therefore I am

  1. Anonymous August 24, 2017 / 3:45 am

    Yes, what’s going on is c$#%%p. And you and I know this is nothing new.
    Your painting is brilliant. You are very talented and I wish you would exhibit it.

  2. Ruth Jacoby August 24, 2017 / 6:55 am

    Brilliant and tragic painting…. everyday, even here in Australia we are horrified and dismayed at the latest grotesque offering from the White House! Your painting should be displayed and we must all protest anywhere we can …. we must learn from history.

  3. richard Edelstein August 24, 2017 / 9:25 am

    Hi Lilianne, your painting is very powerful and captures the essence of what we all feel.

  4. Anonymous August 24, 2017 / 10:02 am

    I think one of your best works ever

  5. Joni August 24, 2017 / 10:02 am

    Wow! Thanks for speaking out through your art!! Check out the cover on latest The Economist chilling….

  6. Marion Deshmukh August 24, 2017 / 2:33 pm

    Your thoughts echo mine and so many others. Your image is spot-on, unfortunately. These past months have been so depressing.

  7. Dr Debbie Joffe Ellis August 26, 2017 / 4:25 am

    Yet again your brilliant art reveals a sober truth, and demonstrates your uncanny intuition, ability to evoke sense and emotion in those who view your art, and your great embrace of moral and ethical ways of being. You enhance our lives and contemplation dear Lilianne. Thank you! Debbie Joffe Ellis.

    • liliannemilgrom August 26, 2017 / 12:12 pm

      I am humbled by your comments.

  8. Anonymous August 29, 2017 / 3:52 am

    this is so strong ! kol hackavod!!!!

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