The White House assured Friday that it would take the necessary ethical precautions around any exhibition and sale of paintings by Hunter Biden, son of the American president, with a tormented personal life and a professional career already peppered with controversies.
Asked about upcoming exhibitions of Hunter Biden’s paintings by the New York gallery Georges Bergès, White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki said on Friday that the president’s son would “attend events”.
“It’s not the same as meeting potential buyers,” she said.
Jen Psaki had already announced on July 9 the establishment of a “system allowing Hunter Biden to practice his profession with reasonable safeguards”, including the confidentiality of any transaction and the absence of contact with buyers.
“All exchanges concerning the sale of works and their amount will be conducted by a professional gallery owner, who follows the strictest rules. Any abnormal offer will be rejected, ”Jen Psaki explained.
Psaki pressed again over ethics of Hunter Biden art sales https://t.co/9LMxCG7gZ0 pic.twitter.com/T4sGBXP5SA
– New York Post (@nypost) July 23, 2021
Hunter Biden a favorite Trump target
“The gallery owner will not provide any information on buyers or potential buyers, including their identity, either to Hunter Biden or to the administration, which ensures a high level of protection and transparency.”
Contacted by AFP, the gallery did not immediately provide details or comments.
The Biden administration, which wishes to present itself as ethically flawless, has been questioned on several occasions about the artistic career of the son of Joe Biden, lawyer and businessman turned painter.
American media point out in particular the risk that industrialists or financiers buy his works with the sole aim of attracting the good graces of the White House. According to the press, the amount of the paintings would go up to 500,000 dollars.
Hunter Biden is one of former President Donald Trump’s favorite targets. The Trump camp has regularly criticized the fact that Hunter Biden had economic interests in Ukraine and China when his father was Vice President of Barack Obama (2009-2017).
He is also the target of a federal investigation into possible tax crimes.
In a book published in the spring, the president’s youngest son recounted his battle with addictions to crack and alcohol.