Schwarzenegger portrait hung with notable touch-up
Dec. 05, 2014
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — The official portrait of former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger was hung Friday alongside past governors at the state Capitol after getting a touch-up on the spot where his wife's image was removed.
Austrian artist Gottfried Helnwein smoothed out a smudge that once featured a lapel button showing the face of wife Maria Shriver, Capitol curator Koren Benoit said. That part had been noticeably painted over when the portrait was unveiled in September.
The two separated after revelations emerged about an affair Schwarzenegger had with his maid that produced a son. It's not clear who removed the Shriver image in the first place.
"The original artist fixed it," Benoit said.
The painting of the two-term Republican governor was hung on the third floor of the Capitol next to his predecessor, Democratic Gov. Gray Davis. Schwarzenegger was elected governor in the same special election in 2003 in which Davis was recalled.
The realist-style portrait features a steel frame and captures a youthful Schwarzenegger standing in front of the state seal.
Benoit said there's some concern about people touching the portrait because of its photograph-like feel. Portraits are deliberately raised high on the wall because some have been damaged in the past with squirted ketchup or key scratches.
Alison Parks, a tour guide with the state Department of Parks and Recreation, stopped with a group of children in front of the portrait minutes after it went up.
"The cool thing about this painting is that we've been waiting for it for a long time, and it's finally up on the wall," Parks said. "And it doesn't have a name yet, a plaque, but can anyone raise their hands and tell me who this is?"
Several hands shot up, and the children said, "Arnold Schwarzenegger."
"Of course a lot of them recognize him not because he was the governor but because of the movies," said Katie Hagen, a parent who was accompanying another group of fifth-grade students on a Capitol tour. "I think it's fitting for his personality."