News Articles Library Event Photos Contact Search

Displaying items by tag: worth

Catherine Hutin-Blay, the daughter of Pablo Picasso’s (1881-1973) second wife, claims that a handyman stole over 400 of the artist’s sketches and watercolors from her. Hutin-Blay inherited a sizable chunk of Picasso’s oeuvre when her mother passed away as well as the home in the south of France where her stepfather and mother are buried.

Hutin-Blay believes that between 2005 and 2007 Freddy Munchenbach made off with 407 Picasso originals. She became suspicious after a number of works surfaced at auction in 2011. Munchenbach worked as a handyman for Hutin-Blay as well as the daughter of Picasso’s art dealer, who noticed pieces were missing from her own collection.  

The works, which are said to be worth less than $3,000 altogether, carry a much lower estimate than other Picasso works. The thief will most likely be unable to sell the works as collectors rarely buy art lacking authenticity, provenance and a legal title.

Published in News

A federal judge will settle an ownership dispute over a Pierre-Auguste Renoir (1841-1919) painting that was purchased at a flea market in West Virginia for $7. The FBI is currently holding the painting until the argument is settled.

Marcia “Martha” Fuqua claims to have purchased the painting in 2009 and subsequently stored it in a trash bag until she had the work authenticated two years later. After learning that the painting was an authentic Renoir, Fuqua planned to sell the work at auction; it was expected to garner around $75,000. However, Fuqua’s plan was foiled when documents from the Baltimore Museum of Art surfaced, revealing that the painting had been stolen in 1951. It was later determined that an insurer, the Fireman’s Fund, paid a $2,500 claim on the theft; the insurer is now battling Fuqua for ownership of the painting.

Paysage bords de Seine (1879) is believed to have been painted by Renoir on the spot for his mistress. An appraiser hired by the FBI estimated the painting’s worth at approximately $22,000, considerably less than Fuqua’s appraisal as concerns regarding the painting’s ownership and possible theft have lowered its value.

U.S. District Judge Leonie Brinkema ordered Fuqua and the Fireman’s Fund to make their cases in written pleas later this month. The FBI is still investigating the case.

Published in News