Stephen Colbert Portrait Set to Leave National Portrait Gallery

A nation turns its lonely eyes to you, Colbert. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)
A nation turns its lonely eyes to you, Colbert. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)
Jason Dick
Posted April 14, 2015 at 1:49pm

Nation! It’s come to this. Stephen Colbert’s portrait is coming down from its rightful spot in the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery, on the second floor between the bathrooms and above the water fountain. The painting of Colbert in full satiric regalia with tchotchkes was loaned to the Smithsonian by “The Colbert Report” in December as part of the hoopla surrounding the show’s final season. The portrait’s last day in its place of honor is April 19, well before Colbert starts playing it straight as he replaces the retiring David Letterman on CBS’s “Late Show” on Sept. 8. In 2008, the museum installed a portrait of Colbert, then eventually sent it to the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History. The most recent portrait is heading back to Comedy Central, according to Marielba Alvarez, public affairs associate at the Portrait Gallery.  

No word on whether Santa Claus and Alex Trebek will usher the portrait away, as they did for Colbert himself on the final episode of “The Colbert Report.” For now it appears the wax statue of Colbert at Madame Tussaud’s is safe.  


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