In pictures: Donald Trump’s presidency as the art world saw it

As Trump leaves office, we look back at the legacy of his four years leading the US and how artists captured it


On 9 November 2016, the world entered a new, polarised era as Donald Trump ascended to the US presidency. Today, his four years leading the US come to an end as Joe Biden is inaugurated as the 46th President of the United States.

In this video, we recap Trump's term in office, through artists' work and news photos taken from The Art Newspaper's coverage. Below are links to some of the key articles.


9 November 2016: Artists express dismay at Donald Trump’s US election victory

1 December 2016: President Trump: the knowns and unknowns


10 January 2017: Strikes, closures and public gatherings: the art world gears up for Trump’s inauguration

20 January 2017: Trump’s inauguration: museums lay on alternative events

23 January 2017: London art world joins weekend of protest

1 February 2017: Art world reels from Trump’s immigration ban

16 February 2017: Art heavyweights back new campaign targeting rise of right-wing populism

30 April 2017: Bipartisan politicians rally to save US cultural funding

2 May 2017: NEA and other culture agencies spared the axe

1 June 2017: The Donald Trump style of art history

18 August 2017: President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities members resign en masse in protest

22 September 2017: US museums challenge Trump’s immigration ban in court


10 January: Trump: the first year

13 February: Trump wants to axe NEA and other culture agencies—again

26 March: NEA and other arts agencies given funding boost by Congress

26 April: Trump’s travel ban: artists and museums speak out against third iteration

22 June: Artist collective tackles 'disappearing kids' under US immigration policy

2 July 2018: Spotlight on the harrowing image that shamed Trump

12 July: Donald Trump’s UK visit sparks backlash from the art world

16 August: Why arts journalism matters: because art matters

6 November: Art dealers across the US are mobilising in support of Democrats ahead of US mid-term elections


27 February: Trump spent $60,000 in foundation money to buy vanity portrait, Michael Cohen reveals in testimony

13 March: Counting the cost of the longest government shutdown in US history

18 March: Trump wants to axe the NEA. Yes, again.

3 June: What art did the Queen show Donald Trump?

19 September: Park Service report warns that Trump's border fence could harm archaeological sites

20 November: Gordon Sondland: art collector, museum patron, European diplomat — and the man who might get Donald Trump impeached

21 November: Trump awards National Medal of Arts for the first time since taking office


4 February: 'An impeachment tomb stone': Jenny Holzer creates work to mark President Donald Trump's trial

18 February: President Trump blows up Native American grave site for his border wall

23 April: US Congress renews payroll loan programme for small businesses and non-profits reeling from coronavirus, extending hopes for museums

29 April: The NEA hopes to keep arts jobs alive in the US—with limited federal relief funds

2 July: The war over racist monuments is escalating throughout the US

8 July: International art students may be forced to leave the US under Trump's new ICE policy on remote learning

21 July: Carrie Mae Weems, Ed Ruscha, LaToya Ruby Frazier and other artists have had 'enough' of Trump

8 September: The art of the steal? Trump swipes $750,000 worth of art from the US Embassy in France—but none of it is the real deal

21 September: US President Donald Trump’s angry tweets recorded in tiny pricks

6 October: Ahead of US elections, artist group highlights 'devastating impact' of Trump's travel ban three years on

28 October: Living monuments of Trump’s failures arrive in Washington ahead of the election

2 November: The 2020 US election: what it means for the arts

4 November: And now we wait? Seven works that perfectly depict the US election limbo

6 November: Podcast | US election: How Trump’s presidency has affected the arts

8 November: Art world rejoices in Biden’s win of US presidency

9 November: Kara Walker kicks Donald Trump to the curb and more of the best Instagram art responding to the US election

25 November: What will Joe Biden's culture policy look like?


7 January: Storming of US Capitol: art world condemns police hypocrisy in pro-Trump riot

18 January: 'Consigned to history': Trump Baby blimp donated to Museum of London collection

19 January: Biden inauguration is largely virtual—but some live art is planned

19 January: Was QAnon—America's most dangerous conspiracy theory—inspired by Italian artists?

20 January: 'A win for internationalism': what a Biden presidency will mean for the Chinese art world