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17 Masterpieces Stolen in Verona Art Heist

23 November 2015

Our daily round-up of news from the art world

Masked Thieves Steal Paintings Worth £10 million from Verona’s Castelvecchio | Bandits in Verona have stolen 17 paintings from the city’s Castelvecchio fortress, reports the Daily Telegraph. Art historian Tomaso Montanari has described the heist as the ‘most serious theft in the history of Italian art’, adding that the notoriety of the works – which include paintings by Tintoretto, Rubens and Pisanello – would make them impossible to sell on the open market. As of yet, the culprits have still not been identified. Perhaps unsurprisingly, certain commentators have already voiced conspiracy theories about the theft.

Greta Moll’s Descendants Threaten to Sue National Gallery Over Matisse Painting | Matisse’s Portrait of Greta Moll has become a subject of contention between the National Gallery in London, which bought the painting in good faith in 1979, and the descendants of the sitter, who claim it was stolen from their family during the Second World War and are threatening to take legal action against the museum. A spokesman from the National Gallery has since stated that as the legal owner of the painting – whether it was previously stolen or not – the institution is under no obligation to give it back. If the case does go to court, it may set a new precedent for restitution claims.

Study Finds Middle Class Still ‘Dominate’ UK Arts Sector | A study conducted by Goldsmith’s University and the arts organisation Create has found that the UK arts sector is still ‘dominated’ by the richer echelons of society, reports The Guardian. The disheartening but somewhat unsurprising study also suggests a significant gender disparity in terms of pay, with women earning consistently less than men. How further cuts will affect this situation when the Spending Review is published later this week remains to be seen.

Science Museum Announces Leonardo Exhibition for 2016 | We are about to see a different side to Leonardo Da Vinci. London’s Science Museum has announced that it is to stage a major exhibition devoted to Leonardo’s contribution to science and engineering. The show will feature models of the flying machines, diving apparatus and military equipment that the artist designed, and will consider how his projects presaged modern robotics.            

Gary Hume to Leave White Cube | Artist Gary Hume is to part ways with Jay Jopling’s London-based White Cube gallery, reports The Art Newspaper. Hume, who is spending increasingly more time working in America, has left the gallery by mutual agreement, but his relationship with White Cube remains ‘close and extremely positive’. All’s well that ends well, then.

Hudson’s Heritage Awards Shortlist Announced | The shortlist for the 2016 Hudson’s Heritage Awards has been revealed. The awards, which were established in 2011, recognise exceptional visitor experience in heritage sites around the country, encompassing everything from stately homes to former industrial sites. The shortlist features venues around the UK in 11 categories.