Portland artists raise money for Sanders with anti-Trump shirts

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Though president-hopeful Bernie Sanders opposes super PACS, a super pack of local artists took another route to raise cash for the Democratic candidate this winter.

Disillusioned by Donald Trump “spewing words of hate and division,” three self-employed Portland artists created a silk screen image of Trump wearing a cap that, instead of saying “Make America Great Again,” simply reads “Chump.”

Portland glass artist Brian Owoc plunked down $315 to start the project dubbed “Through the ignorance of some comes inspiration to others.” All proceeds of the $20 locally made tees are donated to Sanders’ presidential campaign.

Owoc, aka KGB Glass, and girlfriend, artist Sarah Mobsby, were inspired by a popular tee from a past political season made in Portland 10 years ago.

“I have a shirt with a stencil outline of George W. Bush wearing a hat that says ‘Idiot,'” said Owoc. “Flash forward to present day, seeing Trump in his hat made me think of my old T-shirt and how I should make another shirt similar.”

The Arm Factory, an East Bayside printer, donated services for the limited run. Initially Owoc was going to take a percentage of sales, but changed his mind. “I wanted it to be more than just a shirt, and feeling that Bernie is the best current candidate I decided to donate the profits to the Bernie Sanders 2016 campaign.”

chump tag

The shirts are selling fast. They have been shipped to California, Oregon, Texas, Colorado and even Canada said Owoc. “I could have just donated $315 of my own money to the campaign, which would have been 10 times larger than the average donation to Bernie,” said Owoc. Instead the group expects to raise $1,260.

With the average Sanders’ donor kicking in $30, this shatters expectations. When the artists dropped off their first $600 donation to Sanders’ Portland headquarters “they were so happy and amazed. They said it was the largest donation they had seen and was even more special because it was from local self-employed artists and small businesses,” said Owoc.

“If Trump wasn’t spewing such ignorance I would have never had the idea for this project. It goes to show that sometimes you can get shown the light in the strangest of places if you look at it right,” said Owoc.

Shirts can be purcahsed online at www.kgbglass.com

Kathleen Pierce

About Kathleen Pierce

A lifelong journalist with a deep curiosity for what's next. Interested in food, culture, trends and the thrill of a good scoop. BDN features reporter based in Portland since 2013.