Kehinde Wiley will paint Obama's official presidential portrait

Kehinde Wiley and Amy Sherald to Paint Portraits of Barack and Michelle Obama

Both Wiley and Sherald are the first black artists commissioned to make a presidential portrait.

Former President Barack Obama has selected as the artist to paint his official portrait for the Smithsonian gay portrait painter Kehinde Wiley, the museum announced Monday.

The Smithsonian portrait tradition began with George H. Bush and while those who have come before Obama have been painted by Everett Raymond Kinstler, a 90-year-old painter, Obama and his wife have chosen the younger Kehinde Wiley.

In 2008, Mr Wiley said he would "love" to produce Mr Obama's official portrait.

Kim Sajet, the director of the National Portrait Gallery, said she was "absolutely delighted that Kehinde Wiley and Amy Sherald have agreed to create the official portraits of our former President and First Lady". We definitely can not wait to see the paintings of the Obamas; they're sure to make us miss them even more. Wiley, who is 40 years old and based in NY, is known for painting contemporary male subjects in a style reminiscent of Old Masters portraiture, remixed.

His rich, highly saturated colour palette and his use of decorative patterns complement his realistic, yet expressive, likenesses.

The portraits are commissioned by the National Gallery and the White House at the end of each presidency. Baltimore-based Amy Sherald paints black subjects in grayscale with brightly colored clothes and backgrounds. She also won a National Portrait Gallery portrait prize past year.

The Portrait Gallery is now raising funds for the portraits, which will be unveiled in early 2018.

He is believed to be an exciting choice for the presidential portrait.

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