Presidential Portraiture

2.15.2018

Have you seen the Presidential portraits of Barack and Michelle Obama?

"Barack" by Kehinde Wiley & "Michelle Obama" by Amy Sherald

 

The portraits will be housed in the National Portrait Gallery and are quite contemporary compared to those of the previous paintings and conservative depictions of former presidents.

 

Rachelle Hampton writes in SLATE magazine: 

".........a dazzling and elegant streak of light and color. President Obama is set against a riot of greenery that, according to the artist, charts “his path on Earth through those plants.” Michelle Obama, famous arms on display, is rendered in grayscale against a backdrop of blue as cool as Obama herself. In aesthetics, if not always in politics, the Obamas presented a bright and lovely contrast to the stately whiteness of the highest office of our country, and the portraits presented Monday by the National Portrait Gallery capture their joint vivacity.

The portraits are extraordinary for a myriad of reasons, not least of which is both artists the Obamas chose—Kehinde Wiley for the former president and Amy Sherald for the former first lady—are black."

 

The complete article can be found here: http://www.latimes.com/resizer/QpQV1bOZBuuOMtg4ZatBxrPMnmg=/1400x0/arc-anglerfish-arc2-prod-tronc.s3.amazonaws.com/public/I5JDSRZGNVAO5DVMTZ4FUFTKOA.jpg

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