California Artist Receives Death Threats For Anti-Trump Billboard

PHOENIX (AP) — The artist who created an anti-Trump billboard overlooking a busy Phoenix highway says she’s been receiving death threats.

Santa Monica artist Karen Fiorito was commissioned by a Phoenix art gallery to design a billboard that would comment on the administration of President Donald Trump. One side of the billboard depicts Trump’s face, flanked by mushroom clouds and dollar signs mimicking Nazi swastikas. The other side of the billboard shows one word, “Unity,” with five hands spelling out the word in sign language.

The Arizona Republic reported (http://bit.ly/2mHK6ux ) the billboard went up Friday night and Fiorito said she and her husband began receiving death threats Saturday morning.

Twenty-five-year-old Fiorito said she expected the backlash because a billboard she created in 2004 that called President George W. Bush a liar drew threats.

“There have been a couple of people who have said they will come and get me, or that I should be sleeping with a gun underneath my pillow,” she said.  “They are very determined to get under my skin.”

She says has also received positive feedback.

“Tons and tons of positive feedback,” “People either love it or they hate it. A lot of people have defended me online and offered to give me money to keep it up.”

Fiorito has been an artist her entire life. She earned a master’s degree in arts from Arizona State University and says the billboard is expected to remain up through the duration of Trump’s presidency.

“If things change or get worse, we might update it,” she said.

She plans to lay low, for now.

 

(© Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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