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Bush painting hits record at Doha auction

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Dubai: A controversial painting by Iranian artist Mahmoud Obaidi, commemorating the 2008 incident in which an Iraqi journalist threw his shoe at the then US president George W Bush, was sold for $62,500 (Dh229,564) at a Sotheby’s auction in Doha.

The price of the painting titled Farewell Kiss was the highest paid so far for the Iranian artist’s works, the organisers said on Tuesday.

The piece, included in a collection auctioned on Monday, was controversial because of its political content. It portrayed a picture of Bush surrounded by shoes.

In December 14, 2008, Iraqi journalist Muntadhar Al Zaidi hurled his shoe at Bush during a Baghdad press conference. The reporter was later jailed for a few months.

Twelve other artists, including Indian sculptor Anish Kapoor, also sold their art work in Doha at prices they had never achieved before.

The total figure netted at the auction reached $8 million, with as many as 13 sales records, Sotheby’s expert Aileen Agopian said.

The auction, which was held in the cultural city of Katara, included 52 pieces of contemporary art by artists from across the Middle East, the US and Britain. Artists from 22 countries were present at the event.

Chief Editor

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