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“Ode to January 6th” Painting Unveiled by Elaine Badgley Arnoux

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“Ode to January 6th” Painting Unveiled by Elaine Badgley Arnoux

Famed 96 Year Old San Francisco Artist Known for Mayoral Portraits and Last Year’s “Kneeling Man” Tribute to Colin Kaepernick and Black Lives Matter

“The January 6th Guernica”

(Ode to January 6thby Elaine Badgley Arnoux)

21 July 2022 – San Francisco. As the last of the planned prime time January 6th Congressional hearings gets underway,  famed San Francisco artist Elaine Badgley Arnoux (, 96, has finished a wall-sized indictment of the 45th President, the GOP and the anti-democratic forces that laid siege to the United States Capitol on January 6, 2021 in a failed coup attempt.  

“This is the January 6th Guernica,” said Arnoux, referring to Picasso’s iconic and monumental work following the Fascist bombing of the Spanish Basque town of Guernica during the Spanish Civil War. Arnoux has long been known for her official portraits of San Francisco Mayors including a soon-to-be unveiled portrait of London N. Breed and a lifetime of activist art such as last year’s “Kneeling Man” inspired by Colin Kaepernick and Black Lives Matter. “I don’t pull any punches in my art. This is a full throated, full throttled indictment of those people who tried to overturn our democracy.”

A vividly colored and dramatically intense tableaux, “Ode to January 6this seven feet by nine feet.  Badgley-Arnoux hopes the painting will become a rallying cry for the mid-term elections and beyond. Currently, the artist is looking for an appropriate public space to display the work. With imagery both realistic and metaphorical, “Ode to January 6th” is a stinging artistic indictment of former President Donald Trump

“I won’t even say his name,” said Arnoux, who nonetheless features an eerie silhouette of the former chief executive as part of the canvas. “I only refer to him as the 45th and pray God never again President.”

In the center is an effigy of “Little Red Riding Hood” hanging from a noose: a graphic and disturbing image with specific meaning.

“That’s the GOP,” states the artist. “Red like red states, dressed up to look harmless, but in reality a wolf at the throat of our Republic.”

Elaine Badgley Arnoux was born in Omaha, Nebraska in 1926 and moved to Southern California when she was 11. She received an award to study at Chouinard Art Institute, Los Angeles, and later moved to San Luis Obispo where she worked as a painter. In 1952 Badgley Arnoux co-founded the San Luis Obispo Art Association. In 1965, she and her family relocated to San Francisco where she continues to live and work.  Badgley Arnoux’s long and productive career as a painter and portraitist, teacher and activist reflects her extensive travel and residence abroad in Europe, Mexico and North Africa, which strengthened her dedication to people and social welfare. Her works are featured in the collections of numerous museums including the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco and Achenbach Collection; Stanford University Library Special Collections, Stanford, CA; the National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC; Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley; and the de Saisset Museum, Santa Clara, CA.  She has done numerous commissions for public places, including a recent portrait for Openhouse, Community for LGBT Seniors, San Francisco.