TEHRAN, Iran (AP) – Some of the most valuable works of contemporary Western art are being shown to the public for the first time in decades… in Tehran.
The country’s president, Ibrahim Raisi, a conservative cleric, is critical of Western influence. The authorities criticized the “deviant” artists for “attacking Iran’s revolutionary culture”. The Islamic Republic plunged further into its confrontation with the United States and Europe as it rapidly ramped up its nuclear program in the face of stalled diplomatic efforts.
But contrasts abound in the Iranian capital, where thousands of wealthy men and women – all in headscarves – marveled at the masterpieces of American and European art of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries and conceptual minimalism, on display for the first time this summer at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Tehran.
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