Peculiarium, Portland’s most peculiar art gallery, decided that the White House needed to update its art collection. So, in an attempt to pitch an (un)realistic option, they photoshopped the paintings to make them look like sentient Harry Potter-like portraits.

And it didn’t take long before the subjects in the artworks started “reacting” to President Trump and his actions.

Peculiarium shared the humorous images on their social media accounts and the series went viral, prompting quite a few funny comments in the process too!

More info: peculiarium.com | Instagram | Facebook | Twitter

Image credits: Peculiarium

Image credits: Peculiarium

“After the election, I was so disgusted, and couldn’t believe that Trump had gotten elected. As an artist, I had to do something, so I was cranking out memes to show my anger,” Mike Wellins of Peculiarium explained the origins of the series to Bored Panda. “Is it more for me or for others? I don’t know,  and kind of don’t care, I had to do something. I have black friends, I have Mexican family members, I’m half Jewish, and I have friends all over the world of all countries, and Nationalism is insanity. I think Republicans are out of control and anti-American.”

“I’ve always been a fan of cartoons or posters and I know that people go by imagery now, and if the old adage a picture is worth a thousand words, has never been more true. So I make memes and political cartoons.  It’s an old tradition that goes back to the muck rackers like Upton Sinclair and of course, memes cross all languages and like original cartoons were also meant for those who can’t read … it’s always about hearts and minds, so if I can help with a laugh or a jab or if I can remind the decent people that they aren’t alone, then it’s worth it.”

Image credits: Peculiarium

Image credits: Peculiarium

Mike said the photoshopping part was pretty simple, compared to drawing. “I find the features I like on other photos and then combine them on the painting and use liquify to change expressions and then spend a bit of time adding texture, blur so it’s consistent with the painting. The finger that George is flipping with the big skull ring, for example, was some biker rally photo I found.”

“It was funny because I’d made these, and now it was like 4 am, and I’d burned most of my anger, so I finished, and then posted them on Twitter, and went to bed, and by the time I’d woken up, they were trending. It was crazy. There’s a strange thing that happens when something resonates, and I’ll be damned if I can figure out what it is that goes nuts, but that’s the big question.”

Image credits: Peculiarium

Image credits: Peculiarium

Since 1800 when the first work of art, the full-length portrait of George Washington by Gilbert Stuart, was acquired for the President’s House, all kinds of objects, including paintings, sculpture, furniture, and china have been purchased by or donated to the White House for the enjoyment of the First Families and their guests.

Since 1967, the White House Historical Association has taken an active role in obtaining and donating portraits of recent presidents and first ladies. The artists are selected and the completed portraits approved by the subjects before formal acquisition into the collection.

Image credits: Peculiarium

These versions of the paintings, interacting with their surroundings and reacting to what is currently going on in the office, really remind us of the magical portraits we’ve seen in the Harry Potter universe where the paintings made of certain individuals, namely witches and wizards, have sentient subjects due to enchantments placed on the portrait by the painter.

The portrait is able to use some of the subject’s favorite phrases and imitates their general demeanor based on how the subject appears to the painter. A subject can also move from one painting to the next, or visit a portrait of themselves elsewhere in the world, so if a Donald Trump picture is ever on the walls of the White House, something tells me the Founding Fathers will want to have a word with him. At least Mike thinks so.

“They would be horrified at his presidency, not that Trump is clearly a two-bit crime wannabe who got Daddy’s money and a Russian stooge, but I think they would be more shocked at the people who enabled him, and looked the other way. For example, when Trump mocked the disabled reporter, I couldn’t believe it was over, when he was caught molesting women on tape, it wasn’t over, when he insulted war heroes, it wasn’t over. That would horrify the Founding Fathers just like it horrifies anyone with compassion and a sense of decency.”

Image credits: Peculiarium

Image credits: Peculiarium

Here’s what some people said after checking out the images