The painting was withdrawn from an auction in 2014 because of claims to the right of the painting. However, the court has now decided the painting will be auctioned by Antik A.Ş.
The painting will be auctioned starting at an opening price of 10,000 Turkish Liras. The 132-year-old oil-on-canvas painting was finished by the artist 1882 when he founded Mekteb-i Sanayi-i Nefise-i Şahane, currentlyknown as Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University. Until now, the painting has been kept in Gebze Mayor Mustafa Zeki Bey's collection. The auction is a first for the painting, which has never before been auctioned.
Osman Hamdi Bey's “Cami Önü” features 16 human figures and displays the soul of daily life during the Ottoman period in an effective composition. After “The Tortoise Trainer,” the work is the most important known painting by Osman Hamdi Bey.
His 1906 painting, “The Tortoise Trainer,” broke a record in Turkey when it sold for $3.5 million in December 2004.