The Obamas' personal art stimulus package - Macleans.ca

The Obamas’ personal art stimulus package

Plan to revamp White House art collection will affect artist’s market values

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The First Couple’s intention to revamp the White House art collection to include the bold abstract work of lesser-known African-American, Asian, Hispanic and female artists is sending ripples of joy through the art market, reports the Wall Street Journal. Like Michelle Obama’s clothing choices, the Obamas’ art selections telegraph a political message-signalling political inclusiveness and a defiant change from the staid 19th-century still lifes, pastorals and portraits that dominate the White House’s public rooms. Collectors predict that the choices will likely affect the artists’ market values-and raise their profiles. The changes in White House art come as the Obama administration seeks to boost arts funding; the president included $50 million in his economic stimulus package for the National Endowment for the Arts.

The Wall Street Journal

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