A Japanese museum showcasing art created in countries on the 43rd parallel will sell off its 400-piece collection, including prints by Salvador Dali and Joan Miro, the owner said yesterday. Masaru Miyata, 69, opened the N43 Degrees Museum in 1997, after a decade collecting the artworks as he travelled in Europe, North America, China and Mongolia, visiting countries lying on that line of latitude.

The collector established the museum in Kushiro, a city also on N43, on Japan’s main northern island of Hokkaido.

“I wanted to compare and contrast the artworks created on the same latitude,” Miyata said, telling us that he was planning to close the museum next month because of his age and health concerns.

“I collected them as I backpacked the world over many years, so it is unbearable to let them go separately. I hope the entire collection will be acquired as a whole,” he said.

The works on sale include prints of a 12-piece set of Dali’s “The Song of Songs of King Solomon”.

“I don’t mind selling the whole collection for about ¥20 million (RM763,000), one-tenth of what I spent, but I haven’t yet been able to find a new owner,” Miyata said.

His collection, mostly contemporary, also includes prints by prominent American artists like Andy Warhol, George Segal and Josef Albers.