Obama Hope at National Portrait Gallery

Obama portrait

You might remember that red, white and blue illustration of Barack Obama, staring off into space with the word “Hope” underneath his face.

That illustration got a lot of attention during the presidential campaign. Now people visiting Washington can see the original, up close and in person, at the National Portrait Gallery.

The work by artist Shepard Fairey can be seen in the gallery’s new arrivals section. The Los Angeles artist presented the illustration to the gallery on Saturday, three days before Obama’s inauguration.

Fairey says he made the image in mid-January last year, and then the posters were distributed at campaign events and made available to download online.

Source: Christine Simmons, AP

In related news, here in the Great White North, the Stephen Harper Conservatueurs have cancelled plans for a National Portrait Gallery.

And I quote:

The Harper government has abruptly cancelled plans for a National Portrait Gallery that has been in the works for years.

Newly minted Heritage Minister James Moore announced Friday that none of the proposals received from developers is acceptable to the government.

He said it’s important for the government to act prudently in a time of economic instability and the project cannot go ahead.

He made the announcement after 5 p.m. on a Friday — a tried-and-true strategy to minimize bad press.

And, if you’re a design aficionado, head over to Art Threat to see the Stephen Harper portrait contest. The prize is $1,000 (Canadian), but hurry, the deadline is March 1, 2009!

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