Pablo Picasso “Harlequin Head” (1971); Claude Monet “Waterloo Bridge, London” (1901) and “Charing Cross Bridge, London” (1901); Henri Matisse “Reading Girl in White and Yellow” (1901); Paul Gauguin “Girl in Front of Open Window” (1898); Meyer de Haan “Self-Portrait” (1890); Lucian Freud “Woman with Eyes Closed” (2002) / fire (?)
In July 2013, the mother of a suspected art thief confessed to having burnt these artworks in her kitchen stove.
Olga Doragu, mother of Radu Doragu, told police she burnt the paintings in a bid to destroy the evidence when her son was arrested in January. He was one of three suspects taken into custody after paintings collectively valued at $150 million disappeared from the Kunsthal museum in Rotterdam on October 16, 2012.
“After the arrest of my son I was very scared because I knew that what had happened was very serious,” court documents record Doragu’s mother as having told police.
“I placed the suitcase containing the paintings in the stove. I put in some logs, slippers and rubber shoes and waited until they had completely burned.”
Dogaru told investigators she had initially stored the artworks in an abandoned house before eventually burying them in a cemetery in the village of Caracliu. Once police began searching for the works, she dug up the paintings and burned them.
Authorities are currently in the process of analyzing the ashes, which specialists say contained “small fragments of painting primer, the remains of canvas, the remains of paint” and copper and steel nails, some of which pre-dated the 20th century. Still, it could be months before Dogaru’s account can be verified.
Henri Matisse, “Reading Girl in White and Yellow,” 1919
Pablo PIcasso, “Harlequin Head,” 1971
Claude Monet, “Charing Cross Bridge, London,” 1901
Claude Monet, “Waterloo Bridge, London,” 1901
Paul Gaugin, “Girl in Front of Open Window,” 1898
Meyer de Haan,“Self-Portrait,"1890
Lucian Freud, "Woman with Eyes Closed,” 2002