Landscape painter Thomas Kinkade—known as the “Painter Of Light” because he trademarked that phrase for himself, and as a purveyor of patriotic and Christian-themed images that are meant to contain a “larger moral dimension”—has been busted for drunk driving. It’s part of a pervasive pattern of self-destructive behavior for Kinkade, whose innocuous, assembly-line images of peaceful cottages, Jesuses, and snow scenes have made him the nation’s self-described “most collected artist,” which is sort of like Velveeta bragging that it’s “America’s most sought-after cheese.” As Kinkade himself once said, “We have found a way to bring to millions of people an art that they can understand,” which just about sums up his Norman Rockwell-meets-Walmart approach.
But beyond his crimes against taste, Kinkade has also been accused multiple times of unfair dealings with his own Thomas Kinkade Signature Gallery franchises, like in 2009 when an appeals court awarded $2.1 million in damages to gallery owners who accused Kinkade of using “terms like 'partner,' 'trust,' 'Christian' and 'God'" to create "a certain religious environment designed to instill a special relationship of trust" with them while he sold his own paintings at a discount on the side, all so Kinkade could lower the value of his publicly traded company and buy it out himself, ruining his investors in the process.
Even more fun than that, Kinkade has been known to act like a complete ass in public, heckling other, less-successful painters who can’t claim that “God is my art agent” (actual quote), and engaging in I'm-a-rich-untouchable-asshole behavior like his “ritual territory marking” which he accomplishes through urinating on things—like a Winnie The Pooh figure outside the Disneyland Hotel, which he peed on in the late '90s while proclaiming, “This one’s for you, Walt.” He’s also been known to grope the breasts of female admirers and exclaim, “These are great tits!” And then there’s the hilarious incident in 2006 when he got drunk and began screaming “Codpiece! Codpiece!” at a Siegfried & Roy show.
And yes, much like these previous displays of douchery, Kinkade’s DUI arrest will likely have no effect on his career, and he will always be more popular and wealthy than all of his critics put together, but his arrest affords us yet another opportunity to point at him and laugh, even as we know it’s a hollow and petty exercise. Let’s all do that now at his mug shot, which is hilarious. Hey Thomas Kinkade, were you bitter when they kicked you out of The Mighty Mighty Bosstones?
Hey, is anyone out there really good at Photoshop? If you send us a Thomas Kinkade-style rendering of Thomas Kinkade’s mug shot, we’ll post it and make sure everyone knows you’re awesome.
UPDATE: Here's a pretty good one, courtesy of commenter Jeremy Bear.
And here's an awesome rendering of Kinkade's arrest, brought to our attention by commenter Rich. Thanks guys!
UPDATE: Here's another worthy contender from "Adolph Oliver Pubes."