Whether he’s boxing for charity, photobombing a beach wedding in a wetsuit, or casually emerging topless from a cave while hiking in Quebec, our shirtless prime minister knows how to make a lasting impression.
So maybe that’s why artist Derrick Poisson-Davril just can’t get Justin Trudeau off his mind.
“I’ve always been a big fan,” says the sculptor, one of the hottest talents out of Ottawa’s underground art scene. “And last summer, after seeing all those shirtless selfies, I just knew I had to make some sort of tribute.”
And what a tribute he’s made. The 29-year-old multi-media artist chiseled a Michelangelo-inspired statue of shirtless Trudeau with a playful and well-placed maple leaf. FLARE is proud to bring you this exclusive first look.
“It just seemed like a great way to honour Justin and immortalize all his shirtless moments—plus, I wanted to show off our fun side as Canadians. I love this country, and I hope my quirky, whimsical sculpture will bring lots of cheeky smiles to everyone,” he says. “Our leader isn’t afraid to share a selfie. We shouldn’t take that for granted.”
While the artist anticipates some criticism over objectifying our PM, he welcomes any discussion about double standards in politics and in art. He certainly doesn’t think there’s a risk of overexposing Trudeau.
Plans are in place for the artist to create at least a dozen more Shirtless Justin Trudeau statues and erect them in major cities across Canada, ideally in time for the country’s 150th celebrations. Judging by the Kickstarter campaign he created last night, he’s well on his way to making it happen. At last count, nearly 1,500 people backed his project, pledging more than $85,000—well above his original $50,000 goal.
The first Shirtless Justin Trudeau Statue will arrive in Ottawa on July 1. The artist encourages everyone to post selfies with the statue, using the hashtag #ShirtlessTrudeau.
No word yet on whether Trudeau will attend the unveiling, but we can dream.
Update: This was our April Fools’ Day joke—we hope you enjoyed it!