What does it mean for someone to be “cool?” Does it mean they are put-together, stylish, admirable, calm? Perhaps all of the above. The Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery in Washington, DC explores the meaning of “cool” and the American icons who embody it in its appropriately named exhibit American Cool.
Among portraits of Madonna, David Byrne, Sam Shepherd, Tom Waits, Paul Newman and Jimi Hendrix sits a 1980’s photograph of the beloved Steve Jobs. The portrait by Charles O’Rear catches Jobs riding a motorcycle between meetings on the Apple campus, wearing a laid-back, full beard and a smooth pair of blue jeans.
Want to see the portrait in person? American Cool runs in Washington, DC through September 7.
Image by Blake Patterson