It’s a relatively common occurrence for the historical gallery in Washington, D.C., which seeks to honor not only the deaths, but also major awards and achievements, of both historical political figures and American cultural icons, the gallery’s senior historian said.
Near the gallery’s lobby is now a print of the photo used in Williams’s March 12, 1979 “Time” magazine cover, under a plaque reading, “In Memoriam.”
“We’d like people to remember the entirety of that career, the joy and laughter he brought to millions of people,” National Gallery Senior Historian David Ward told ABC News.
The gallery has already displayed portraits of Williams before his death; he was voted into the gallery’s collection based on his iconic status as an actor and comedian, Ward said.
The gallery retrieved the photo, which it already owned, from a storage facility in Maryland this morning and displayed it around midday, Ward said.