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Portugal to keep Miro collection
Femmes et oiseaux, an oil on canvas painted on 3 January 1968, illustrates one of the most enduring and characteristic themes in Joan Miró’s oeuvre: women and birds. Estimate: £4-7 million. Photo: Christie's Images Ltd 2013.

LISBON (AFP).- The Portuguese government said Tuesday it had decided to keep 85 works by famed Spanish artist Joan Miro in the country after an uproar over their proposed sale to foreign buyers.

The paintings, estimated to be worth around 35 million euros ($39 million), came under state ownership in 2008 when the government nationalised the failed bank BNP which had built up the Surrealist collection.

The former centre-right government put them up for auction in London in 2014 to raise cash, but they were withdrawn after an outcry and a legal challenge from political opponents and activists.

Centre-left Prime Minister Antonio Costa announced Tuesday that the government had "finally decided to keep the famous collection of Miro works in the city of Porto." 

It is unclear if they will remain state-owned or be sold to private collectors, but a government official said any private buyer would have to accept keeping them in Porto. 

The paintings will go on display for the first time next Saturday at the city's Serralves museum in an exhibition that runs until January 28.

© 1994-2016 Agence France-Presse

Today's News

September 28, 2016

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Van Gogh Museum announces new acquisition: "Farm in Brittany" by Paul Sérusier

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Installation tells the story of iconoclastic businessman and art collector

British Museum display focuses on rock art

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Portugal to keep Miro collection

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Pierre Huyghe chosen as recipient of the 2017 Nasher Prize

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Throckmorton Fine Art exhibits works by one of Mexico's most important and admired photographers

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Highlights from the National Jewish Archive of Broadcasting examine classic and contemporary advertising

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Galerie Springer Berlin opens exhibition of works by Edward Burtynsky

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Canada confirms Arctic discovery of 200-year-old ship

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