The butt stops here

19th January 2007 at 00:00
An art teacher has been sacked from a high school in the United States because of his cheeky print-making technique.

Complaints were made to Monacan high in Richmond, Virginia, after pupils discovered that Stephen Murmer had a side-line as a "butt artist". Under the pseudonym of Stan Murmur, he sold art over the internet which he created by daubing his posterior and genitals in paint then rubbing them against the canvas.

His pieces, which often depict tulips and other flowers, have been bought for as much as pound;700 and have featured on Graham Norton's TV programme here. Pupils and some parents have defended Mr Murmer since the school suspended him in December when footage of him was spotted on the YouTube website. But Chesterfield county school board voted unanimously to fire him last week, claiming his presence was a disruption to students. Young people needed good role models, they ruled.

Jason Anthony, Mr Murmer's lawyer, told Associated Press: "Chesterfield lost a tremendous asset today".

Mr Murmer's unique canvases are available at www.buttprintart.com.

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