Governor Pawlenty chooses the painter of his portrait

Governor Tim Pawlenty, like other governors before him, will have a painting of his likeness hanging in the state capitol.

While Minnesota has plenty of great artistic talent to choose from, Pawlenty has chosen Rossin (a.k.a. Ross R. Rossin – he likes to simply go by his last name), a Bulgarian-born painter based in Atlanta, Georgia. Rossin was the portrait artist of both President George H. W. Bush and President George W. Bush. Rossin and his family moved to the United States in 2001, and he became an American citizen earlier this year.

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A portrait of the two Presidents Bush, painted by Rossin

Rossin is also known for his incredibly lifelike portraits of American icons such as Jackie Kennedy and Britney Spears.

Governor Pawlenty’s official portrait will be unveiled in 2011 in conjunction with the Minnesota Historical Society. The cost of the portrait – between $25,000 and $30,000 – will be paid with funds from the Governor’s Office budget.

For reference, Governor Jesse Ventura’s portrait was painted by Stephen Cepello, who works in California.

So if you were going to have someone paint your portrait, who would it be?