A Tribute to Edel Rodriguez, Whose Trumprageous Art Defined an Era and Gave Us Hope

Cuban American Artist Edel Rodriguez's Minimalist Rage Defined the Era of Trump
Cuban American Artist Edel Rodriguez's Minimalist Rage Defined the Era of Trump

In a fitting end to the Trump era, artist Edel Rodriguez closes out his nemesis’s presidency with one last magazine cover — a tattered and torn American flag at half staff, that perfectly sums up not just the failed MAGA coup, but the last four years. The cover image, which appears on today’s issue of The New Yorker, is titled “After the Insurrection.”

Rodriguez, who as a teenager fled with his family to the U.S. from Communist Cuba, told The New Yorker, “a part of America died on January 6th,” and that “the flag at half-mast marks that moment.”

Rodriguez has been marking the moment at each turnstile of Trump’s presidency, through his minimalist orange-hued depictions of the mad man who was accidentally elected in 2016. Whether gracing now-iconic magazine covers or in self-published illustrations, his work has captured the insanity of a one-term president — destined to go down as history’s worst — and the outrage he provoked over four long years. Rodriguez, in no small way, helped the resistance survive by giving voice to the obvious and hope to the disenfranchised.

The following is a tribute to this artist, illustrator and graphic designer who speaks for the true patriots of our nation. For that we thank you Edel. [Editor’s note: all images are courtesy of the artist and his social media unless otherwise noted.]

How- it-started illustration
How-it-started illustration with Trump’s famous phrase about shooting someone on 5th Avenue and not losing any voters.
2016 Magazine Covers and self-published image of debate with Hillary Clinton
2016 Magazine covers and self-published image of debate between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton by Edel Rodriguez.

 

Feb 4, 2017 Der Spiegel Cover
Feb 4, 2017 Der Spiegel Cover by Edel Rodriguez — the artist first made the image in response to Trump’s Muslim ban and it quickly went viral on his social media feed before getting picked up by Europe’s largest magazine.

 

Magazine covers and self-published image in response to white supremacists march on Charlottsville
2017 magazine covers and self-published image by Edel Rodriguez, in response to white supremacists march on Charlottsville, VA, where one woman was killed and Trump said there were “very fine people on both sides.”

 

2018 magazine covers featuring art by Edel Rodriguez
2018 magazine covers featuring art by Edel Rodriguez

 

Jan 7, 2018 - What Rodriguez would have done with Michael Wolff's book Fire and Fury's criticized cover
Jan 7, 2018 – What artist Edel Rodriguez would have done with Michael Wolff’s book Fire and Fury‘s cover (the original cover art had been somewhat panned as lackluster by critics)

 

2018 illustrations by Edel Rodriguez
2018 illustrations by Edel Rodriguez

 

Dec 14, 2019 Der Spiegel Cover Yes, He Can
Dec 14, 2019 Der Spiegel Cover by Edel Rodriguez — Yes, He Can (Just Get Away With It All)

 

July 2020 Rodriquez shared his process for his minimalist design
July 2020 Edel Rodriquez shared his process for his minimalist design on his social media feed.

 

Artist Edel Rodriguez Trump Covid Art 2020
Artist Edel Rodriguez’s Trump Covid Art 2020 curated by if it’s hip, it’s here.

 

Trump v Biden, Let's Get Ready to Rumble
Trump v Biden, Let’s Get Ready to Rumble by Edel Rodriguez

 

Edel Rodriquez Trump v Biden Art
Edel Rodriquez’s Trump v Biden Art curated by if it’s hip, it’s here.

 

Nov 7, 2020 “Make America Great Again” Der Spiegel cover art by Edel Rodriguez, following Joe Biden’s election win over Donald Trump

 

Images following the January 6, 2021 Capitol Riot
Edel Rodriguez images following the January 6, 2021 Capitol Riot. Work in progress on the left. Right image titled “Public Enemy Number One.”

 

You can view the artist’s portfolio and contact him at his studio website. You can also follow him on Twitter at @edelstudio and Instagram at @edelrodriguez.

 

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Olive America
About Olive America 69 Articles
Olive is the founder and editor of Cartoon State, a progressive blog that explores the drollery of U.S. politics in the age of Trumpism.

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