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Putin’s Painting fetches £1 million in Charity Auction

Vladimir Putin’s first painting fetched 37 million Russian rubles (£1 million) at a charity auction in his native St. Petersburg.

The premier’s work is one of 30 to benefit two hospitals and to help restore a church in Putin’s hometown. It was bought by Natalia Kournikova, a Moscow gallery owner.

The 30 pictures auctioned, each featuring a different letter, are loosely based on “Christmas Eve,” a story by 19th-century author Nikolai Gogol, and are painted on woolen cloth, a reference to another Gogol story, “The Overcoat.”

Putin’s work featured a frost-encrusted window framed by embroidered curtains and the Russian letter “u,” for “uzor” (pattern). His signature is prominently inscribed in the upper left corner.

He produced the painting in collaboration with local artist Nadezhda Anfalova during a Dec. 26 visit to the city.


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