Barack and Michelle Obama Portraits Stir Sentiment, Controversy

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Barack and Michelle Obama returned to the public eye on Monday, February 12.

Both the real-life versions of these stars and two pieces of artwork based on them, as the Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery unveiled its two latest additions to its presidential portraits collection.

The paintings of the 44th President of the United States and his First Lady were completed by world famous artists Kehinde Wiley and Amy Sherald, respectively, and each drew quite a reaction on social media.

Some users looked at these portraits and longed for the days when there was a sense of sanity and intelligence in the White House.

Others, meanwhile, looked at Michelle's in particular and wondered: WTH is that?!?

Scroll down for a look at the paintings and for some of the most prominent reactions online to them...

1. Barack Obama

Barack Obama
Simple. Elegant. Beautiful. There weren't many negative responses to this depiction of former President Obama.

2. Michelle Obama

Michelle Obama
A thing of beauty or a thing of controversy? The Internet is split on this official Michelle Obama portrait.

3. How Appropriate

How Appropriate
Two African-American artists for the first African-American couple in the White House. Makes sense, right?

4. We Feel Ya, Little Girl

We Feel Ya, Little Girl
These portraits are gorgeous, they just take us back and give us ALL the feels.

5. We're Not Entirely Sure What This Means

We're Not Entirely Sure What This Means
But it still sounds about right to us.

6. The Future Seems Bright

The Future Seems Bright
It only SEEMS that way upon portrait glance, that is. In reality, let's remember who is President.

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Stars:
Barack Obama, Michelle Obama
Related Photos:
Barack Obama Slideshows, Michelle Obama Slideshows
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Barack Obama Biography

Barack and Michelle Obama
Barack Obama is the 44th President of the United States of America. He became a Democratic U.S. Senator from Illinois in 2004, and has... More »
Born
Birthplace
Honolulu, Hawaii
Full Name
Barack Hussein Obama II

Barack Obama Quotes

I do think in Washington, it's a little bit like American Idol. But everybody is Simon Cowell.

Barack Obama

I think I'm a pretty cool dad.

Barack Obama