'SUPERPUTIN' exhibition gives Russian leader a pop-art makeover

MOSCOW, Dec 6 (Reuters) - Russian President Vladimir Putin is seen riding a brown bear in medieval armor, cuddling a puppy and dressed as Santa Claus - it's not his latest series of publicity photos, but rather artwork at a new Moscow exhibition focussed on Russia's leader.

The exhibition, dubbed "SUPERPUTIN," features around 30 paintings and sculptures of the Russian leader in a variety of different styles, all of which were made by Russian artists.

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'SUPERPUTIN' exhibit at Moscow museum
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'SUPERPUTIN' exhibit at Moscow museum
A woman walks past busts depicting Russian president Vladimir Putin in the colours of the Russian national flag at the "SUPERPUTIN" exhibition in UMAM museum in Moscow, Russia, December 6, 2017. REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov
A man takes a picture of a painting depicting Russian president Vladimir Putin at the "SUPERPUTIN" exhibition in UMAM museum in Moscow, Russia, December 6, 2017. REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov
People look at a mobile phone as they stand in front of a painting depicting Russian president Vladimir Putin at the "SUPERPUTIN" exhibition in UMAM museum in Moscow, Russia, December 6, 2017. REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov
People look at the paintings depicting Russian president Vladimir Putin at the "SUPERPUTIN" exhibition in UMAM museum in Moscow, Russia, December 6, 2017. REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov
A woman poses for a picture with a sculpture depicting Russian president Vladimir Putin riding a bear at the "SUPERPUTIN" exhibition in UMAM museum in Moscow, Russia, December 6, 2017. REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov
A man looks at a painting depicting Russian president Vladimir Putin at the "SUPERPUTIN" exhibition in UMAM museum in Moscow, Russia, December 6, 2017. REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov
A man looks at a painting depicting Russian President Vladimir Putin during the 'SUPERPUTIN' exhibition at UMAM museum in Moscow on December 6, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Yuri KADOBNOV / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - TO ILLUSTRATE THE EVENT AS SPECIFIED IN THE CAPTION (Photo credit should read YURI KADOBNOV/AFP/Getty Images)
TOPSHOT - A man looks at a painting depicting Russian president Vladimir Putin at the 'SUPERPUTIN' exhibition at UMAM museum in Moscow on December 6, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Yuri KADOBNOV (Photo credit should read YURI KADOBNOV/AFP/Getty Images)
A visitor walks past a painting depicting Russian president Vladimir Putin at the 'SUPERPUTIN' exhibition at UMAM museum in Moscow on December 6, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Yuri KADOBNOV / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - TO ILLUSTRATE THE EVENT AS SPECIFIED IN THE CAPTION (Photo credit should read YURI KADOBNOV/AFP/Getty Images)
A woman takes a picture next to a painting depicting Russian president Vladimir Putin at the 'SUPERPUTIN' exhibition at UMAM museum in Moscow on December 6, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Yuri KADOBNOV / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - TO ILLUSTRATE THE EVENT AS SPECIFIED IN THE CAPTION (Photo credit should read YURI KADOBNOV/AFP/Getty Images)
Visitors walk past paintings and busts depicting Russian president Vladimir Putin at the 'SUPERPUTIN' exhibition at UMAM museum in Moscow on December 6, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Yuri KADOBNOV / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - TO ILLUSTRATE THE EVENT AS SPECIFIED IN THE CAPTION (Photo credit should read YURI KADOBNOV/AFP/Getty Images)
Visitors speak next to a painting depicting Russian president Vladimir Putin at the 'SUPERPUTIN' exhibition at UMAM museum in Moscow on December 6, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Yuri KADOBNOV / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - TO ILLUSTRATE THE EVENT AS SPECIFIED IN THE CAPTION (Photo credit should read YURI KADOBNOV/AFP/Getty Images)
A woman walks past a painting depicting Russian president Vladimir Putin at the 'SUPERPUTIN' exhibition at UMAM museum in Moscow on December 6, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Yuri KADOBNOV / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - TO ILLUSTRATE THE EVENT AS SPECIFIED IN THE CAPTION (Photo credit should read YURI KADOBNOV/AFP/Getty Images)
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In a happy accident of political theater, the exhibition opened on the day that he announced his bid for a fourth term as Russia's President.

The exhibition runs from today in the UMAM museum in Moscow until Jan. 15. (Writing by Mark Hanrahan in London; Editing by Toby Chopra)

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