Jim Carrey Says the Political Phase of His Art Career Is Over. Now He’s On to Painting Mangoes
“We got tricked by politicians and weird corporate concerns to believe that disagreement is hatred,” the actor-artist said.
It appears the days of Jim Carrey’s scathing, often viral cartoon paintings of Trump, Mussolini, and other power-hungry politicians are officially over. Instead, fans of the comedian-cum-artist can expect more… mangoes?
In an interview promoting his new film, Sonic the Hedgehog, Carrey told Yahoo Entertainment that he’s decided to move away from the topical cartoons that have decorated his Twitter page for years and won him a gallery show at LA’s Maccarone gallery.
“To me, that was a time…where I just wanted to be the lighthouse that was saying, ‘Hey, stay off the rocks. You’re headed for the rocks,’” Carrey says of the last chapter of his artistic career. “We’re still headed for the rocks, but I’ve decided you understand my message. I don’t need to be steeped in it anymore.”
The actor explained that he felt mired in the back-and-forth, commentary-on-commentary world of online political discourse and instead wanted to encourage people to be good citizens and exercise their votes. He also suggested the intentions behind his work were misunderstood.
“What I want to tell people is that it’s never been a matter of hating anyone, that I can sit down with anyone in this country and break bread. I love people,” he explained. “To me, we got tricked by politicians and weird corporate concerns to believe that disagreement is hatred. I will never go for that.”
Recently, Carrey has pivoted his paintbrush from man to mango, becoming obsessed with the “fruit of the Gods,” as he characterizes them.
“They represent abundance and sweetness and the gifts of the universe. So that’s where I’m at.”
Carrey began sharing his cartoons on Twitter around the 2016 presidential election. Within a year, new paintings would come out on a near-weekly bases, lampooning right-wing figures such as Roy Moore, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, and Robert Mueller. He’s depicted Kay Ivey as a fetus, Jeffrey Epstein as the Creature from the Black Lagoon, and Sean Hannity as a manatee. (The Ace Ventura star has also been a long-time anti-vaccines activist, comparing them to “fascism.”)
Carrey’s artwork has received mixed reviews from critics. The Guardian’s Jonathan Jones called him an “astonishingly bad painter and sculptor,” saying his work “gives amateurs a bad name.” Jerry Saltz, on the other hand, called Carey “definitely an artist,” comparing his cartoons to those of R. Crumb.
In remembrance of Carrey’s political period, here’s a collection of some of his more inspired efforts:
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