Hilarious ‘Daily Show’ Exhibition Proves Donald Trump’s Tweets Are Really Art
The president's Twitter account gets the museum treatment.
Thanks to The Daily Show, President Donald Trump’s Twitter account isn’t just infamous—it’s art. The long-running Comedy Central show, hosted by South African comedian Trevor Noah, presented a New York pop-up exhibition (June 16–18) satirizing the tradition of the presidential library and elevating the tweet into an art form.
“Aside from the nuclear fallout, these tweets will be Trump’s most lasting legacy,” wrote The Daily Show in a tweet announcing “The Donald J. Trump Presidential Twitter Library,” which aimed to “explore the history, science and art of Trump’s tweets—from his earliest attempts to put stubby fingers to phone to his emergence as our era’s preeminent social media revolutionary.”
A stone’s throw from Trump Tower, crowds lined up down the block at 3 West 57th Street—the wait was an hour and a half even during Saturday’s pouring rain—to see what The Daily Show staff had learned from an in-depth analysis of Trump’s 35,000-plus tweets.
The show has given the former reality star’s Twitter account the full museum treatment, with visual displays, videos, multimedia, and interactive exhibits. Each display was paired, as befitting a work of art, with over-the-top signage talking about things like “oblique symbolism.”
There was Trump’s newest masterpiece, the famed “covfefe” tweet, a late-night complaint about negative media attention that trailed off into a mysterious typo. It was printed on the wall and displayed in a gilded frame, one of several standout “works” so honored.
There was a painting, an updated version of Emanuel Leutze Washington Crossing the Delaware recast with Trump and various members of his administration.
There was sculpture, in the form of a vitrine displaying a rotating pair of tiny orange hands clutching a smartphones. And there was drawing, with political cartoons by Boris Rasin illustrating Trump’s nasty nicknames for his political opponents, such as Little Marco, Crazy Bernie, Crooked Hillary, and Lyin’ Ted.
There was even installation art—or at least a photo op in the “Oval Office” where guests could sit enthroned on a Maurizio Cattelan-eque golden toilet and tweet while wearing a luxurious bathrobe and Trump wig.
Somehow, the fondant-covered election cake, which Trump and Vice President Mike Pence cut bride-and-groom style at the inaugural ball, was there too—in styrofoam. In a bizarre twist, it is an exact copy of the real cake cut at Barack Obama’s 2013 inaugural festivities.
Every visitor also had the honor of being given their own derogatory moniker, courtesy of a Trump nickname generator. (Mine was “Not Good Sarah.”)
Other highlights included a map of the world with Trump’s rude Twitter comments about various foreign countries, a giant magnetic poetry set that allowed you to create your own Trump tweets—the “#MAGA-NETIC WALL,” of course—and displays featuring Trump’s tweets on various subjects, with titles like “SAD! A Retrospective” and “Deleted but Not Forgotten.”
Trump’s holiday greetings, which invariably single out the “haters and losers,” were particularly amusing, as were Trump’s various Twitter battles, which saw him attacking the likes of Diet Coke and actor Kristen Stewart. (Trump took particular offense when she allegedly cheated on boyfriend Robert Pattinson “like a dog.”)
Also of note were the statistical break downs of Trump’s tweets, which saw him peak with 9,182 in 2015. He’s on pace for just 1,744 tweets this year, his lowest total since 2011.
The exhibition follows The Daily Show‘s March “Third Month Mania” event, which saw the show’s digital department combing through each and every Trump tweet and selecting the 64 “best” to participate in a college basketball style bracket competition. The winner? “Are you allowed to impeach a president for gross incompetence?” from January 2014.
The exhibition was such a hit that it held extended hours on its last day, and The Daily Show is already considering touring the library across the US, hopefully bringing the art of the president’s Twitter to a city near you.
Follow Artnet News on Facebook:
Want to stay ahead of the art world? Subscribe to our newsletter to get the breaking news, eye-opening interviews, and incisive critical takes that drive the conversation forward.