She’s Trumped the shark.
Lena Ruseva, a 44-year-old Soviet emigre, is causing a stir with her provocative series of paintings depicting the former president.
In “Trump: Parallel Universe” — a collection of 30 paintings — Ruseva imagines Trump as Neptune, a Buddhist monk, Tarzan and the face of the sphinx. One image shows him making contact with alien life; another features him riding a great white shark while draped in an American flag.
Some of the paintings are overtly political. A mammoth 48′ x 72′ acrylic on canvas called “Expulsion From The White House” shows the former president as God expelling the naked and ashamed Joe Biden and Kamala Harris. The imagery is derived from Masaccio’s renaissance fresco “Expulsion from the Garden of Eden.”
“I wanted to play around with childish fantasies,” Ruseva told The Post. “Some people hate him and call him racist. Some people love him and they are real fanatics. Everyone has their own picture of Donald Trump.
“I like Donald Trump as he is a strong person,” added Ruseva, who now lives in Fair Lawn, N.J. “It’s easy to criticize. It’s easy to say somebody is wrong or bad, or whatever, but how many people have reached what he reached?”
Ruseva, a green-card holder from Soviet Moldova, immigrated to the United States in 2012 and got her start as a mural painter. She spent 18 months painting the walls of the Magical Palace of Knowledge, a kindergarten in Clifton, N.J.
When she’s not painting politics and presidents, she makes a living producing kitschy commissioned portraits of jowly animals — frequently smoking a cigar. The portraits generally run from $500 to $1,200 depending on the size.
Ruseva’s work has been well-received in MAGA land. Her exhibition was hosted at the Metropolitan Republican Club last month and she’s recently palled around with former White House personages, including Andrew Giuliani and Boris Epshteyn.
So far seven pieces from “Trump: Parallel Universe” have been sold for prices ranging from $1,000 to $4,000. Another art show dedicated to Trump is planned for Palm Beach in January.
In left-leaning New York City, though, the event was not without drama. A gallery which had agreed to stage the show backed out at the last minute after receiving violent threats, Ruseva said, adding that she herself was harassed and threatened on social media as news of her show percolated online.
“U will get f–ked big time for this. Just wait and see. Now go f–k yourself,” read one message to her Instagram account.
When an insurance company learned of the subject matter, they asked Ruseva to tack on “terrorist insurance coverage.” The NYPD alerted the Department of Homeland Security to the event, Ruseva said.
The artist insists she’s not political, but has been disturbed by how Democrats have moved to curtail free expression like hers in recent years.
“In Russia, you try and post something against government [and] in three to four hours someone will knock on your door. I hope it’s not going to happen here,” she said.
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