World Leaders Who Draw

Ten months ago, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau sketched Winnipeg’s Canadian Museum for Human Rights. Yesterday, CBC reported that the piece has been appraised at $2,000 CAD but is expected to fetch $10,000 CAD at a charity auction. This got me thinking about other doodles, scribbles and sketches created by world leaders.

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Remember when former US President Ronald Reagan was doodling at a G7 event instead of taking notes? The BBC reports that former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher recognized the significance of his drawings and held onto Reagan’s scribbles for posterity.


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Another Reagan doodle. Look at the initials in the heart -. NDR and RR. The Atlantic published an article on US presidential doodles. Wonder if there’s any correlation between artistic talent and leadership? That’s probably a question for Malcolm Gladwell to answer or research.

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In 2014, George W Bush exhibited his paintings of world leaders at a Texas library. Among the faces to grace the walls was Vladimir Putin, Tony Blair and Angela Merkel.  The exhibit was marred in controversy when an arts and culture blog, Animal New York, suggested that the paintings were based on Google search images. Not really sure how painting from photos makes Putin any less talented.



Former Russian president Vladimir Putin seems to be the most talented of all, or should I say financially more lucrative. In 2009, one of his paintings was purchased by a Moscow art gallery for about $1.5 million CAD. You can see for yourself whether the shopping spree was a good investment.