Former United States President Barack Obama did not fail to note his wife former FLOTUS Michelle Obama's "hotness" during the unveiling of their official portraits at the Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery on Monday. The former first couple tapped artists Amy Sherald and Kehinde Wiley for the paintings at the gallery, a rite of passage for most former US leaders, all of whom have their portraits displayed in the museum.

The former POTUS thanked and complimented African-American artist Sherald, who is based in Baltimore, for her work. "I want to thank you for so spectacularly capturing the grace and beauty and intelligence and charm and hotness of the woman that I love," Obama said.

Michelle’s portrait shows her sitting in a long dress adorned with geometric shapes. Her one hand is under her chin and the other is draped across her lap. Her expression looks thoughtful.

The former first lady said she "was a little overwhelmed, to say the least” during the unveiling. She was also quick to update her Instagram followers. She posted that she was thinking about the impact the work will have on "girls and girls of colour.”

"They will see an image of someone who looks like them hanging on the walls of this great American institution and I know the kind of impact that will have on their lives because I was one of those girls," Michelle wrote.

The portrait of Obama, the first African-American US president, was painted by Wiley. He joked that Wiley was at a disadvantage because his subject was "less becoming.” He also said he tried to negotiate less grey hair.

Netizens, including celebrities, have reacted to the Obamas’ portraits, with US comedian Chris Rock calling Obama the “real Black Panther.” Musician Common said their portrait was “beautiful.” Model Chrissy Teigen simply asked the former POTUS to “come back” and pleaded for his wife to “help us.” Director Ava DuVernay said the portraits reminded her to hope.

The Portrait Gallery's tradition of commissioning portraits of former US leaders started with former POTUS George HW Bush. Other portraits were purchased at auctions or acquired as gifts.

As for the Obamas, they looked at the portfolios of over two dozen artists before deciding on Sherald and Wiley. Their portraits will be open for public viewing on Tuesday. The former POTUS’ portrait can be seen in the hall of presidents, and Michelle’s can be viewed in another gallery.