Donald Trump’s photo now in National Portrait Gallery, Internet asks 'strings attached to Putin’s photo?’

The photograph was a potrait taken in 2019 for Time magazine by Pari Dukovic

                            Donald Trump’s photo now in National Portrait Gallery, Internet asks 'strings attached to Putin’s photo?’
Donald Trump seated at the Resolute Desk in the Oval Office at the White House on May 01, 2020 in Washington, DC (Getty Images)

A photo of former president Donald Trump has been included at the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery. The gallery was closed due to the coronavirus pandemic, but will reopen on May 14. Trump’s photo, which was captured by photographer Pari Dukovic in 2019 for Time magazine, has reportedly been installed in the museum’s signature exhibition, ‘America’s Presidents’.

According to the official website of the museum, the image was “taken on June 17, 2019, the day before Trump officially announced he would seek reelection.” It added, “This photograph shows him at the Resolute Desk, which has been in the White House almost continuously since 1880."

The note about Trump's photograph continues, "The flags in the background, placed in the office during Trump’s presidency, reflect the five branches of the armed forces (left to right): Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force and Coast Guard. Also visible in the background (left) is Asher B. Durand’s portrait of Andrew Jackson (1835), a figure whom President Trump alluded to frequently. On the right is a portrait of Benjamin Franklin (c. 1785) by Joseph Duplessis, on loan to the White House from the National Portrait Gallery.”


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Reportedly, ‘America’s Presidents’ is the only place outside the White House where portraits of all presidents of the US are available. Along with the photos, details about the leaders, their time in office, and the challenges they faced can also be found in the exhibition. It has been said Dukovic’s photo of Trump will remain at the museum until his official portrait is ready. It has replaced Kehinde Wiley’s portrait of 44th President Barack Obama, which is scheduled to go on a year-long, multi-city tour with Amy Sherald's painting of former first lady Michelle Obama starting in June.

Donald Trump walks toward Marine One in Battle Creek, Michigan on December 18, 2019 (Getty Images)

“There’s always a sense of transition when we install a new presidential portrait. We are a museum that reflects art history and biography, and we are able to celebrate the presidents with portraits that are historical documents,” Dorothy Moss, the gallery's curator of painting and sculpture said.

He also explained that brief biographical information about the presidents is written by the museum's historians and curators. “We're looking at the American presidency in its entirety. We do not include critical comments, but we're even in our assessments. It's a process of collaboration. A lot of people review it. There's a lot of discussion,” he added.

Leslie Ureña, curator of photographs, told The Washington Post about Dukovic's picture, “I like the composition of the photograph. It is an angle we don't often see. You get a little bit of the other side and what's behind the desk.”

Donald Trump hugs the American flag while campaigning in Tampa, Florida on October 24, 2016 (Getty Images)

Meanwhile, Twitter was buzzing after Trump’s photo was installed at the museum. A user asked, “Will it have strings attached from Putin’s photo?” The second one said, “Do they have a ‘Warning for sensitive viewers’ sign or at least a safe space for the easily offended?” “Trump will be pleased. I think the eyeliner adds that extra something. Official trump portrait,” a person wrote and another one added, “Was it this one that didn’t sell at auction so Melania had to buy it so as not to embarrass the man child? #cheeseball.”





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