Van Gogh peers out of the canvas with a sidelong, suspicious glance. With hollowed cheeks and a full beard, the painter is recognizable but also doesn’t look as composed and self-possessed as in his numerous other self-portraits. The painting’s surface is rough, with thick brushstrokes that are ragged and aggressive, less precise and controlled than in Van Gogh’s other works.
The immensely popular official portraits of Barack and Michelle Obama are hitting the road next year, and may be coming to a city near you. The National Portrait Gallery has announced a five-city tour that will bring the famed paintings to new museums and new audiences.