Cool Artifacts and Figures

We thought you might enjoy these unique stories of discovery, and of works of art sold (or supposedly so) for some mind-boggling amounts.

Lost & Found: In 2012, a bargain hunter found a picture frame she liked at a local Virginia flea market. Noticing an odd label on the back, her mother suggested they have it checked out. The small oil painting was revealed to be Renior’s Paysage Bords de Seine, which was stolen some 61 years earlier from an exposition in Baltimore, Maryland, and valued at more than $100,000. Way to go, Mom!

A Double-Take from the Double-Wide: In 1992, Teri Horton wanted to cheer up a friend. So, as a joke, she purchased a “lousy painting” for $5.00 at a California flea market. Her friend told her she wasn’t that depressed, and on top of that, had no room for it in her mobile home. When Teri tried to re-sell it at a garage sale, she was told it could be an original Pollock. Some experts believed it to be the real deal, and have estimated its worth between $50 and $100 million. The incident even inspired a documentary entitled Who the &#$@ Is Jackson Pollock?

Four How Much? Commissioned in the mid-60s for $1600, this four-paneled silk screen self-portrait of Andy Warhol was sold in 2011 for $38.4 million.

What a Difference a Day Makes: In 1932, it took Picasso only one day to paint his Nude, Green Leaves and Bust. In 2010, it took only eight minutes to be sold at auction for $106.6 million.

If you don’t get Abstract Art, you really won’t get this: In 2012, Rothko’s Royal Red and Blue sold for $75 million.

It looks like my four-year-old did that: If you’ve ever uttered that phrase, then you’ll enjoy the fact that Willem de Kooning’s Woman III was sold in 2006 for a cool $137.5 million. And, that Jackson Pollock’s No. 5 was rumored to have been sold for $140 million. The bottom line here is, if your kids want to take art lessons…let them!

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