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Michelle Obama portrait coming down Sunday ahead of national tour


There are only a few days left before Michelle Obama’s uber-popular portrait hightails it out of D.C. for a national tour.

Washingtonians have until Sunday — via free, timed-entry passes — to view the painting of the former first lady by Amy Sherald at the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery in the nation’s capital.

After then, Sherald’s portrait, along with Kehinde Wiley’s oil-on-canvas of former President Obama, which is not currently on display, won’t be back in D.C. until next year. The five-city “Obama Portraits Tour” will take the art to the former president and first lady’s hometown of Chicago first, starting on June 18. Other stops along the way will be Brooklyn, Los Angeles, Atlanta and Houston.

The expedition is one of several initiatives from the Washington institution to “engage communities in the power of portraiture.”

The pair of portraits was unveiled at a splashy soiree back in 2018. Upon seeing her portrait for the first time at the Smithsonian event, Obama said she was “overwhelmed,” and touched that “particularly girls, and girls of color, who in years ahead will come to this place and they will look up, and they will see an image of someone who looks like them hanging on the wall of this great American institution.”

A snapshot of a 2-year-old girl staring up in awe at the former first lady’s portrait later went viral and led to a meeting between Michelle Obama and her young fan.

The Obamas’ portraits reportedly attracted record crowds at the National Portrait Gallery after they were installed.

Tags Barack Obama Michelle Obama National Portrait Gallery Obama portraits

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