Stolen Rubens recovered in Athens sting

September 2 2011

Image of Stolen Rubens recovered in Athens sting

Picture: RKD

Police in Athens say they have recovered a lost Rubens. The picture was seized as villains tried to sell it to undercover police for EUR1m.

The police aren't saying what the picture is, officially. But press reports have linked it to a sketch of a Boar Hunt stolen from the Ghent Museum of Fine Arts in 2001. The museum has refused to comment. 

The only relevant image I can find is the above sketch, of a boar hunt, listed in the RKD as being at Ghent. But in the RKD database it is catalogued as 'After Rubens' - so it may not be that picture. 

If the villains had been a little sharper, they could have 'stolen' a Rubens Boar Hunt scene quite legitimately, just a few years ago. In 2005, The Calydonian Boar Hunt (1611/12) by Rubens was sold at auction in Paris as 'Follower of Rubens', with an estimate of just EUR10,000. It now belongs to the Getty Museum.  

More details when I get them...

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