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When Lyndon B. Johnson saw his official White House portrait he called Peter Hurd’s work “the ugliest thing he ever saw” and refused it. In retaliation, Hurd displayed the piece at a Texas museum and then donated it to the Portrait Gallery, which didn’t display it until after LBJ’s death.

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Alessio Baldovinetti painted a Portrait of a Lady in Yellow in approximately 1465. In 1866 the painting was purchased by the National Gallery London, mistakenly attributed to Piero della Francesca as a portrait of Countess Palma of Urbino. It wasn"t until 1911 that an art historian determined that the true artist had been Alessio Baldovinetti. The sitter of the portrait remains unknown.

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  1. The Smithsonian galleries and museums include the African American History and Culture Museum, the African Art Museum, the Air and Space Museum, the Air and Space Museum Udvar-Hazy Center, American Art Museum, American History Museum, American Indian Museum, the Anacostia Community Museum, the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, Freer Gallery of Art, Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Natural History Museum, Portrait Gallery, Postal Museum, Renwick Gallery, American Indian Museum Heye Center, and the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum.

  2. Billy Dee Williams (Star Wars' Lando Calrissian) attended the National Academy of Fine Arts and Design in New York. His work hangs in the National Portrait Gallery, the Smithsonian Institution and the Schomburg Museum.

  3. The Netflix promotional team for "House of Cards" put a painting of "President Underwood" in the National Portrait Gallery as well as a series of ads in the subways of Washington DC, with President Underwood promising America ‘a push in the right direction.’

  4. Stephen Colbert has a portrait in the National Portrait Gallery. It is on the second floor, above the water fountain between the men's and women's bathrooms.

  5. In 1953 a bill was introduced to destroy the Old Patent Office building in Washington DC (the current location of the National Portrait Gallery and American Art museum) to make way for a parking lot

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