President Barack Obama just unveiled his portrait for the Smithsonian, and it’s fantastic

The Smithsonian has unveiled the official portraits of President Barack Obama and Michelle Obama, which were painted by Amy Sherald and Kehinde Wiley — the first black artists ever commissioned to paint a presidential couple for the National Portrait Gallery. [VIDEO BELOW]

"Nobody in the family tree as far as I can tell had a portrait done," President Obama said, after eyeing his colorful portrait by artist Kehinde Wiley.

"I do have my high school yearbook picture — which is no great shakes," Obama added with a grin.

President Obama also added that he attempted to persuade Wiley to use a bit of artistic license with his portrait.

"I tried to negotiate less gray hair," Obama said. "I tried to negotiate smaller ears. Struck out on that as well."

"I'm overwhelmed," Michelle Obama told the audience after she took the first gaze at her portrait by Amy Sherald.

"We have come so far," she continued. "And yes, as we see today, we still have a lot of work to do. But we have every reason to be hopeful and proud."


The flowers seen in the background of President Obama's portrait do have symbolic meanings, according to the Hill.

The chrysanthemums are the official flower of Chicago, where President Obama began his political career. His childhood home of Hawaii is represented through jasmine, and African blue lilies serve as a nod to his late Kenyan-born father, Barack Obama, Sr.

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