It’s been a minute since Darth Vader fan, rap expert, and presidential adviser Steve Bannon made headlines, but he’s apparently back in the good graces of his boss, Donald Trump. That’s the gist of a recent New York magazine profile on Bannon, but it’s not the discussion of Bannon’s rising fortunes that people are fixating on. (Possibly because they’re too depressing to really contemplate.) No, the eye-catching takeaway is this brief note on Bannon’s ego and art, buried about a third of the way through the piece:
And Bannon, too, had a healthy self-regard. On his office wall hung an oil painting of Bannon dressed as Napoleon in his study at the Tuileries, done in the style of Jacques-Louis David’s famous neoclassical painting—a gift from Nigel Farage.
Tragically, a picture of this painting—of Bannon as one of the world’s most successful dictators, gifted from one right-wing isolationist to another—doesn’t appear to have made its way online. (From what we can tell, everything currently circulating is a Photoshop of greater or lesser degrees of skill.) Still, we can just imagine the former Breitbart mastermind working hard to crank out some new line of rabid attack on the president’s enemies, when the limits of human endurance finally force him to take a break from the steady stream of vitriol. Sighing, he looks up at the splendor of the foppish regalia and his own oil-painted face, and the black bile of inspiration begins to refill his angry heart. As Steve Bannonoparte looks down, sternly, Bannon gets back to work, dreams of autocracy and European conquest dancing in his head.