Long before a blue dress went viral last week, another blue dress was the first viral online story. In 1999, the U.S. House of Representatives impeached President Bill Clinton for lying about his "sexual relations" in the Oval Office with intern Monica Lewinsky. The proof? Her DNA-stained garment, which she didn't want to wash ... hey, who doesn't have a few sentimental keepsakes in their closet?
Turns out that Lewinsky's blue dress is also a part of art history. Artist Nelson Shanks, who painted the 2006 portrait of President Clinton for the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C., has revealed that the shadow in the background isn't the former commander-in-chief's.
"If you look at the left-hand side of it, there’s a mantle in the Oval Office and I put a shadow coming into the painting and it does two things," Shanks told the Philadelphia Daily News. "It actually literally represents a shadow from a blue dress that I had on a mannequin, that I had there while I was painting it, but not when he was there. It is also a bit of a metaphor in that it represents a shadow on the office he held, or on him."
Observers had previously noticed that Clinton lacked a wedding ring in the portrait, Politico reports, but apparently Shanks' symbolic shadow flew under the radar for nearly a decade.
"[T]he Clintons hate the portrait," Shanks added. "They want it removed ... they're putting a lot of pressure on officials to do so."
A National Portrait Gallery spokesperson denied this claim, but if Hillary wins in 2016, we're gonna raise an eyebrow if a Predator drone just happens to "misfire" at the institution.