None of Biden’s new works for the show, which feature colorful, flower and tree-like designs, are in his previously documented medium of blown ink abstraction, Bergès told The Daily Beast; they’re all brushwork on canvas.
In an effort to prevent ethical breaches, White House officials have put measures in place to shield information about how much Biden’s work is selling for, and to whom.
Last October, however, the New York Post reported that five of Biden’s original prints sold for $75,000 apiece in anticipation of an LA pop-up presentation for Biden hosted by Bergès.
Federal agents are reportedly currently investigating Hunter’s finances and debating filing tax crime charges against him.
The night before the LA show’s opening night, Bergès called Biden to check on him, the gallerist told The Daily Beast. “He said, ‘Georges, my whole life I feel I’ve done what was expected of me or what people want me to do. For the first time, I’m doing what I want to do, so I have no more reasons to run away or escape.’ And I found that to be very touching, and very reflective of his reality.”
Other entries include vivid, disjointed landscapes and an Hilma af Klint-like rendering of an uroboros surrounding a kaleidoscopic geometric pattern, suggesting a cluttered mind searching for optimistic angles.
“They’re elegant paintings and they’re very complex in terms of their process, and each one has a haiku on the back,” Bergès told The Daily Beast. “The collectors who came in last night were very impressed.” Bergès told The Daily Beast that the price range for Biden’s new pieces is $55,000 to $225,000.
“I think this series is meditative and contemplative, and I think it’s reflective of how he is at the moment,” Bergès added. “There’s a sense of becoming and contentment as he’s getting into his own stride as an artist. The main haiku series is on metal, then he did some others on canvas. He almost reinvents himself to fit the materials, but the great thing is you can see the commonalities in all of them.”
The haikus were all written by Biden. Bergès shared one with The Daily Beast:
Atoms bloom in my chest
All the room is filled it is full
I can see all the colors
Calls to Biden were not returned. Chris Clark, Biden’s attorney, declined an interview request on Biden’s behalf.
Hunter’s “laptop from hell,” containing sexually explicit footage and evidence of heavy drug use, has been at the center of a years-long political firestorm related to allegations that Hunter profited from his father's business deals in China and Ukraine. Over the past few years, the president’s second son has been throwing himself into his budding art career.
“I don’t paint from emotion or feeling, which I think are both very ephemeral,” Biden told Artnet last summer. “For me, painting is much more about kind of trying to bring forth what is, I think, the universal truth...the universal truth is that everything is connected and that there’s something that goes far beyond what is our five senses and that connects us all.”