The Case Of The Mysterious Trump Portraits On The Hill

A BuzzFeed News investigation.

On Wednesday afternoon, a painting of President Donald Trump was spotted being carried around Capitol Hill.

This just came into the Capitol with its creator, Barry Wingard of western PA. He painted it....

Says it wasn't commissioned. Artist contacted Rep. Mike Kelly. Guys carrying it say it (and companion Melania painting) going to VP office.

A portrait of First Lady Melania Trump was its companion. Rumor had it they were headed to Vice President Mike Pence's office.

The plot soon thickened.

MYSTERY: VP spox says office folks on Hill tell him "no new artwork was delivered to either the Vice President’s Ho… https://t.co/WyJShxwyBi

The vice president's office said "no new artwork was delivered to either the Vice President’s House or Senate offices."

BuzzFeed News was able to track the portraits down in Pennsylvania Rep. Mike Kelly's office. He confirmed the artist, Barry L. Wingard, is a constituent of his.

"This is a person taking their talent and their time to show their appreciation," Kelly said, adding that Wingard was very humble.

Here's the artist's Facebook page.

Kelly's office said three other paintings would also be presented once they were in their "hand-crafted frames." Wingard told BuzzFeed News he did not make the frames.

One painting of Trump is based on a pool photo of the president on Inauguration Day. The portrait looks exactly like this picture of Trump signing executive orders on Jan. 20.

Here's a close-up for comparison.

The portrait of the first lady appears to be based on this photo of the Trumps arriving at St. John's Episcopal Church for a ceremony before the inauguration — except it's been flipped.

Here's a comparison of the flipped AP photograph and the painting of FLOTUS.

Wingard said he painted them because he thinks the president "deserves respect."

“The lack of respect for the president has gone on a little too far," he said.