And Michelle was rocking her braids!
44th President Barack Obama and former First Lady, Michelle Obama, made a return to the White House this week to unveil their official White House portraits, CNN reports.
The Obama family still prove to be committed to their mission since their White House exit in 2017. Recently, they partnered with Airbnb to launch a $100 million college scholarship to their production company, Higher Ground. Their first film, “American Factory,” won an Oscar and snagged a new deal with Amazon’s Audible. The dynamic pair have now returned to the White House to participate in a tradition that hasn’t happened in 10 years – the unveiling of the presidential portraits in the White House East Room.
Barack Obama has only been to the White House once since leaving office in 2017, and Michelle hasn’t been back since. Being able to return and receive a warm welcome from his former Vice President and current President Joe Biden, First Lady Jill Biden, and all the other White House staff he’s missed is quite the full-circle moment!
“Barack and Michelle, welcome home,” said President Biden.
The creative geniuses behind the art are Robert McCurdy and Sharon Sprung; McCurdy is the artist behind the portrait of Barack and Sprung is behind Michelle’s. The artwork took over a year to complete and are based on photographs taken of them. The artists were in attendance for the ceremony and were celebrated for the wonderful accomplishment.
After a brief speech from President Biden, the pair took to the East Room stage to pull back the blue curtains to reveal the masterpieces. Obama shared a kiss with his wife then thanked the crowd and Joe Biden, calling him a “true partner and friend.” He closed out his speech by saying, “When future generations walk these halls and look up at these portraits, I hope they get a better, honest sense of who Michelle and I were. I hope they leave with a deeper understanding that if we could make it here then maybe they can do remarkable things, too.” Michelle also shared a few words on the significance of the portraits by saying they matter “not just for those of us who hold these positions, but for everyone participating in and watching our democracy.”
Now, a lot of people may be thinking, “What were those portraits that came out four years ago?” The beautiful portraits painted by Kehinde Wiley and Amy Sherald in 2018 are now on tour around the nation. They’re scheduled to return to D.C. in November for the “America’s Presidents” exhibit at the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery. Until then, Congrats to our 44th President and our former First Lady for joining past leaders on the wall in the East Room.
We love the Obama’s, our forever presidential family!
Photos courtesy of CNN