The work of dromedary art was commissioned for the American embassy under construction in Islamabad, Pakistan.
The life-sized white fiberglass camel will be looking toward the eye of a huge needle.
BuzzFeed Politics reports the inference is a "not-so-subtle play on the New Testament phrase about the difficulty the wealthy have in entering the kingdom of heaven.”
State Department spokeswoman Christine Foushee confirmed the purchase, saying it came from the department's "Office of Art in Embassies.”
The statue will be the work of American artist John Baldessari. Steven Beyer is the project's art dealer.
He claims $400,000 is “actually a very a reduced price for this sculpture.”
He went on to say, “There is an art market that makes these prices, and this is one of the most prominent American artists.”
When it was pointed out that some may think a half-million dollar camel statue is not a wise use of taxpayer dollars, Baldessari disagreed.
“It depends on what part of the public you are in,” he began. “If you go to the museum and enjoy art and are moved by it, things cost what they cost.”
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