[guest post by Dana]
The Obama administration is planning to spend $400,000 to commission a camel staring through the eye of an over-sized needle sculpture from American artist, John Baldessari. The camel sculpture will be installed in front of the American Embassy in Pakistan. The art is called, “Camel Contemplating Needle.” It is reflective of the New Testament and Qur’an teachings about the difficulty those who are wealthy have in entering heaven
Buzzfeed posted a government document which described the sculpture as, “large 500lb fiberglass aluminum, stainless steel, acrylic and painted contemporary art piece.”
The “Camel Contemplating Needle” commission is being defended by the United States. The U.S. State Department is claiming that the price of the artwork was ‘reasonable’ and it reflected ‘the values of a predominantly Islamist country’.
From U.S State Department’s press spokeswoman, Christine Foushee,
‘The proposed purchase comes from the department’s Office of Art in Embassies.
‘In new construction projects, a small part of the total funds, about 0.5%, is spent on art purchases.’
Also, from the federal website, John Kerry explains,
“For fifty years, Art in Embassies has played an active diplomatic role by creating meaningful cultural exchange through the visual arts. The exhibitions, permanent collections and artist exchanges connect people from the farthest corners of an international community. Extending our reach, amplifying our voice, and demonstrating our inclusiveness are strategic imperatives for America.
Art in Embassies cultivates relationships that transcend boundaries, building trust, mutual respect and understanding among peoples. It is a fulcrum of America’s global leadership as we continue to work for freedom, human rights and peace around the world.”
– The average annual income in Pakistan is $1,250.
– Last year, a comprehensive list of Government waste was posted by the NRCC. Should this latest project be posted on the list, perhaps after the $100,000 on taxpayer funded comedy group tour in India? Or maybe after the $697,177 on a climate change musical?