Ivanka Trump Responds To An Art Installation Featuring Her Look-Alike Vacuuming
Until Feb. 17, an exhibition space in Washington D.C. will feature a performative art piece that quickly went viral. The "Ivanka Vacuuming" exhibition shows a model who looks like the first daughter vacuuming a pink carpet with a smile on her face, picking up breadcrumbs that visitors throw on the floor. Ivanka Trump responded to the art installation featuring her doppelganger, and it's clear that she didn't take it as a compliment.
"Women can choose to knock each other down or build each other up. I choose the latter," Trump wrote on Tuesday, retweeting an article about the exhibition.
The "Ivanka Vacuuming" art exhibition premiered at the beginning of February. According to the CultureDC website, the exhibition space where the installation is on display, conceptual artist Jennifer Rubell saw it as a comment that's "simultaneously a visual celebration of a contemporary feminine icon; a portrait of our own relationship to that figure; and a questioning of our complicity in her role-playing."
“Here is what’s complicated: we enjoy throwing the crumbs for Ivanka to vacuum," Rubell said of her work, according to CultureDC. "That is the icky truth at the center of the work. It’s funny, it’s pleasurable, it makes us feel powerful, and we want to do it more.”
“We like having the power to elicit a specific and certain response," Rubell continued, according to CultureDC. "Also, we know she’ll keep vacuuming whether we do it or not, so it’s not really our fault, right?”
The installation drew swift backlash from the first daughter's supporters, who called it "demeaning" and "sexist."
"Sad, but not surprising to watch self professed 'feminists' launching sexist attacks against @IvankaTrump," Donald Trump Jr. tweeted on Tuesday. "In their crazed world, sexism is OK if hurts their political enemies. That's ok, they can go put on their stupid hats & she’ll get back to actually fighting for women."
Eric Trump also commented on the piece, telling Fox News that his sister is a "powerful woman who has done more for women than probably anybody in Washington D.C.," according to The New York Times.
While Rubell's comments on the installation suggest that critiquing Trump and her political positions wasn't the aim of project, Trump's response suggested that she took it as criticism nonetheless.
"Ivanka, I would encourage you to see the piece and form your own direct response," Rubell tweeted on Tuesday. "I would be happy to arrange for you to do it alone with none of the media circus that has formed around it. Not knocking anyone down. Exploring complicated subjects we all care about."
In an interview with Refinery29, Rubell said that the model playing the vacuuming Ivanka wasn't even the piece of the installation that most gripped her attention. Instead, she told Refinery29 that she was "most interested in the complications of the viewer; how they decide to engage with this feminine figure. What does it mean to either throw crumbs, or stand there watching other people throwing crumbs?"
So far, Trump has not responded to the invitation for a private visit.