TEHRAN - Iran has blocked four local photographers from exhibiting some of their work in Paris after certain pictures were deemed to be "against Islamic values and mocking the image of Iranian women."
Sources close to the dispute said Tehran's state-run Museum of Contemporary Art had been due to support the photographers by paying for the packing and shipping of their work so it can appear at the Paris Photo exhibition at the Carrousel du Louvre from November 11-14.
"When the museum sponsors the works it has certain authorities," a spokesman for the museum, Farhad Badpa, told AFP.
"The works that were against Islamic values or mocked the image of Iranian women were ommitted. Other works by these artists that did not insult Islamic values were sent to the exihibition."
The four photographers are Shadi Ghadirian, Ramin Haerizadeh, Yalda Moayeri Amiri and Arash Hanai.
"The museum has offered me no explanation," complained Ghadirian, whose photos feature women clad head to toe in the traditional chador with housekeeping objects -- such as pots, kettles and irons -- for a face.
"These pictures are reflecting me as an Iranian woman," she asserted. "How can I insult and ridicule my own sex? I do not show anything that crosses the red lines like faces or flesh in my work."
This year the Paris Photo exhibition features 105 galleries from 16 countries.