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The Art of Peace

By Sir David Khalili

In 1970, while studying in New York, a young Iranian began collecting works of art. Today, his eight collections comprise around 35,000 objects and 100 publications, which have been exhibited in 126 leading museums and institutions around the world.

This is the collector’s story.

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About the Book

In 1967, Sir David Khalili finished his military service in Iran and travelled to study in the United States with $750 – his remaining royalties from a book he wrote when he was just 14. Over the course of the next five decades he single-handedly, piece by piece, assembled eight of the finest art collections in their field, ultimately becoming one of the world’s greatest collectors, about whom Queen Elizabeth Il once said: ‘It is scary how much this gentleman knows about art.’

For the first time, Sir David shares his extraordinary journey: one that has taken him through the souks of North Africa, the auction houses of Europe and the United States, the bazaars of South Asia, and far beyond. Through a riveting collection of real-life adventures, he reveals his collecting strategy, business ethics and what motivates him to continuously collect, conserve, research, publish and exhibit the treasures in his collections.

Through his story, Sir David questions how the undeniable power of art can be harnessed to foster greater peace and unity worldwide. No one is better placed to enlighten us.