A painting by Spanish artist Pablo Picasso recovered in Istanbul last weekend is dismissed as a fake.
Istanbul authorities were excited to announce that the original painting Woman Dressing Her Hair by Picasso was recovered by Turkish officers in an Istanbul cafe last weekend. According to the Guardian and Anotolia News Agency last Sunday, recovering the masterpiece was the result of a secret operation Turkish authorities had been working on for months. They revealed that “Turkish police, posing as potential buyers, met the prospective sellers at a hotel and then a yacht in Istanbul marina. The suspects were alleged to have initially demanded $8m for the painting but later settled on $7m.” According to the Mirror, the police were originally tipped off by an anonymous Turkish millionaire that had been approached by the art dealers.
It was thought that the painting was originally stolen from Louise Bequest, an art collector in New York. Undercover police arranged for the painting to be delivered to a cafe in Fatih on the European side of Istanbul. On viewing the painting, officers then seized it and arrested the two dealers. The painting was then taken to Istanbul’s Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University to establish authenticity.
The painting seized in Turkey is “most certainly a copy”
The weekends announcement was well covered by local and international media. It prompted a surge of attention from the arts world. Perhaps most apt was from the official Picasso Administration who manage the artists estate. According to the Hurriyet yesterday, they responded late Monday saying that the canvas is “most certainly a copy”. The priceless 1940’s masterpiece is actually safely hanging on the walls of the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York. This has since been confirmed by the museum.
One has to beg the question, why did no one check that such a priceless masterpiece wasn’t hanging in an art galley before? Only in Turkey!
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