On Wednesday, September 7, the White House Historical Association presented the official portraits of former President Barack Obama and former First Lady Michelle Obama, painted by Robert McCurdy and Sharon Sprung, respectively.
The portraits, commissioned by the White House Historical Association, and the artists who painted them were introduced during a White House ceremony hosted by President Joseph Biden and First Lady Dr. Jill Biden and attended by President and Mrs. Obama.
Since 1965, the White House Historical Association has acquired and commissioned official portraits of the president and first lady.
According to the Association: “As is the custom, President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama selected the artists before leaving office. Now that the portraits have been presented to the public, they will hang in the White House and be inducted into the White House Collection.”
“The White House Historical Association is honored to continue the tradition of funding these portraits,” said Stewart D. McLaurin, President of the White House Historical Association. “It’s a career achievement for the artists selected for these important commissions, and they are now forever a part of White House history.”
Simultaneous to the presentation of the portraits, McLaurin, who hosts The White House 1600 Sessions podcast, released a new episode featuring an exclusive conversation with artists Robert McCurdy and Sharon Sprung, discussing the challenges of this unique historical assignment and their approach to creating the portraits.