TEHRAN.(Iranart) inister of Culture and Islamic Guidance Seyed Reza Salehi Amiri said on Friday the works of Tehran Museum of Contemporary Art will not leave Iran.
A selection of 60 pieces among the valuable artworks of the museum treasured collection were supposed to be showcased at exhibitions in Rome and Berlin earlier this year; however, since Salehi Amiri took over as culture minister last November, he said, “I have stressed that these artworks need not be sent to galleries (and museums),” abroad, ISNA quoted him as saying.
The highly-valuable works, including 30 pieces by great Iranian artists and 30 by renowned western artists, were displayed at the TMoCA premises from March 7 to June 17, while they were earlier planned to be showcased in Berlin and Rome.
Both exhibits were canceled by Salehi Amiri last November due to “legal ambiguities raised by legal experts” and on the grounds that the matter needed “more investigation.”
The cancellation took place although a memorandum of cooperation was signed by Majid Mollanorouzi, head of TMOCA, and the board of directors of the Italian National Museum of the 21st Century Arts (MAXXI) last year. Moreover, the German government at the highest level had also guaranteed the maintenance and restoration of the works, assuring Iran on their protection and safe return.
Now, with the end of their exhibition in Tehran, they will be sent back to the museum archives.
The TMOCA has more than 4,000 items that include 19th and 20th century world-class Iranian, European and American paintings, prints, drawings and sculptures by celebrated Iranian artists Sohrab Sepehri, Hossein Zenderoudi, Massoud Arabshahi, Monir Farmanfarmaian, Parviz Tanavoli and Farideh Lashai.
It also is home to works by world artists Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein, Jackson Pollock, Francis Bacon, Pablo Picasso and Mark Rothko among many more.
The museum is said to be worth an estimated $3.7 billion.