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Barack Obama Hails Michelle's Portrait as it Shows 'That She's Fine'

The official Obama portraits have been unveiled.

Corinne Reichert Senior Editor
Corinne Reichert (she/her) grew up in Sydney, Australia and moved to California in 2019. She holds degrees in law and communications, and currently writes news, analysis and features for CNET across the topics of electric vehicles, broadband networks, mobile devices, big tech, artificial intelligence, home technology and entertainment. In her spare time, she watches soccer games and F1 races, and goes to Disneyland as often as possible.
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Corinne Reichert
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The official Obama portraits unveiled at the White House.

Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images

The official portraits of former US President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama were unveiled at the White House on Wednesday. In a ceremony hosted by current President Joe Biden and first lady Jill Biden, the Obamas spoke about their time in the White House, with the former president complimenting how accurate both portraits are.

"I want to thank Sharon Sprung for capturing everything I love about Michelle. Her grace, her intelligence and the fact that she's fine," Obama said, as the former first lady laughed. "She is. The portrait is stunning."

Obama said Robert McCurdy, who painted his portrait, took on "a much more difficult subject."

"He paints people exactly the way they are, for better or for worse," Obama said. "He captures every wrinkle on your face, every crease in your shirt. You'll note that he refused to hide any of my gray hairs, refused my request to make my ears smaller. He also talked me out of wearing a tan suit."

Obama was referring to the tan suit controversy of 2014, when he wore a tan-colored suit to a press conference concerning US involvement in Syria. He was accused by far right-wing politicians and media of not taking the subject seriously enough by wearing a color more suited to a "party."

You can watch the entire portrait unveiling ceremony on YouTube.