Braque Painting Recovered 39 Years After Theft

9 April 2009

The painting surfaced during a routine catalogue check of upcoming Christie’s sales. At the time of the incident, the theft was reported to the Art Dealers’ Association of America (ADAA) who maintained a database of stolen art before it was transferred to the International Foundation for Art Research in New York. Mr. Feigen provided a photo of the stolen item to the ADAA, which perfectly matched the item in the catalogue. Once the artwork was identified, it was pulled from the sale.

Christopher A. Marinello mediated the dispute and was able to negotiate a favorable settlement between all involved parties. In late 2008, the painting was successfully returned to Mr. Feigen’s gallery.

Marinello stated that “It is not uncommon for stolen art to travel great distances.  If an artwork is not recovered in the days and weeks following the theft, it often takes a generation for artwork to resurface on the market. Many people don’t realize that it is never too late to report a stolen item.  It may take years for stolen art to resurface, but it WILL resurface eventually, and when it does, we’ll be there.”