We usually view wall art, such as paintings, mounted on a wall, not in a wall. However, a stolen piece of artwork, painted by Gustav Klimt, was actually discovered, hidden in the wall of an Italian gallery. The story is intriguing, please read on.
In December 2019, a gardener clearing ivy at the Galleria d’Arte Moderna Ricci Oddi in Piacenza, Italy, discovered a canvas, half-concealed by a trash bag, behind a metal panel on the gallery’s exterior wall. The investigation commenced immediately to determine if the painting was Gustav Klimt’s ‘Portrait of a Lady’ (1916–17). Soon, experts confirmed that the painting was one of Klimt’s stolen artworks.
The famous wall art disappeared from the gallery, almost 23 years ago. The museum estimates that the 55 by 65 centimetre expressionist work could be worth between 60 and 100 million euros (£50 to 84 million), but emphasized the difficulty in estimating the work as it has never been sold on the international market. Italian prosecutor Ornella Chicca told reporters:
“It is with no small emotion that I can tell you the work is authentic.”
Two men have admitted to the 1997 theft, according to a report in the Guardian newspaper. The men, who are believed to be members of a gang connected to dozens of robberies in Italy’s northern region, confessed to the crime in a letter to Ermanno Mariani, a journalist for the local newspaper, ‘Libertà’.
Read more via the link below:
Painting found inside Italian gallery wall confirmed as a Gustav Klimt
Gardeners discovered Portrait of a Lady while clearing ivy at gallery in Piacenza
The portrait went missing during preparations for an exhibition in which it was to be the centrepiece. Shortly before the theft, an art student had discovered that the canvas actually contained two portraits. Klimt had painted over ‘Portrait of a Young Woman’, which had not been seen since 1912. The discovery made the painting the only known ‘double’ Klimt, as experts have labelled it. The painting’s broken frame was found on the gallery’s roof, leading police to assume at the time of the heist that it had been reeled through the open skylight.
In the letter delivered to Mariani, the authors describe stealing Portrait of a Lady in February 1997, and they explain their decision to return the painting ‘as a gift to the city.’ They claim to have hidden the painting behind the panel four years after the heist. One of the men, with whom Mariani had previously been in contact during an unrelated investigation, had confessed his guilt to the journalist three years ago. He asked the journalist to arrange a meeting with investigators, but for reasons that are still unclear, he wasn’t viewed as credible by the city’s authorities, even after providing the address of a house where they claim the painting had been stored after the theft.
The ‘Portrait of a Young Woman’ was found in the wall cavity in excellent condition, which supports the theory that it had been hidden elsewhere for a majority of the intervening years. The first confession, which was 20 years after the theft, was due to the protection against prosecution, contained within the law’s ‘Statue of Limitations’.
Watch the video to find out more.
If you are interested in wall art, you may not have £50 million to purchase any of Gustav Klimt portraits. Not to worry, we have fabulous wall art at affordable prices at Brilliant Wall Art.
The wall art at Brilliant Wall Art is truly eclectic, ranging from the classical to the contemporary, but they not fakes. All products are guaranteed and of high quality. Brilliant Wall Art maintain that no, “…other store is as committed as we are to the satisfaction of our customers, and this is why we will continue to offer the very best products at affordable prices.”
You must view our inspirational Metal Wall Art designs. Metal wall art sculptures are the vogue way of brightening up any room, choose from our stunning range featuring colourful, creative and unique designs, our metal tree wall art is a particular favourite for both homes and offices. If you are a fan of modern wall art, we can guarantee you will find the perfect pieces to complete any room. A classic metal wall art guitar or campervan design is always a fun and conversational addition to a collection.
All our metal wall art items are carefully crafted from metal and easy you for to wall mount. Perhaps you know someone who loves metal wall art decor, with various designs across our site making an ideal gift for any occasion. With metal wall art flowers, fish, sailing yachts, lizards any much more to choose from, you will be spoilt for choice. Our handmade and hand-painted glass wall art collection may also be of interest to you.
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- Classic Red Mini Car
- Mod Vespa Scooter
- Silver Racing Bike an iconic piece for road cyclists...
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