- Charles Platiau/Reuters
- For centuries, a painting from the Florentine artist Cimabue was believed to be missing.
- The piece of art, “Christ Mocked,” turned up in a French woman’s home, the BBC reported.
- The painting, which is believed to be authentic, is worth $6.5 million.
- It will go up for auction on October 27.
- Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.
For centuries, a painting from the Florentine artist Cimabue was believed to be missing. But this year it turned up in the home of a 90-year-old woman living in the French countryside.
The painting, “Christ Mocked,” is part of a series from the 13th century, the BBC reported. It was part of a larger polyptych, a series of paintings that depicted the crucifixion of Christ.
The painting had been hanging above a hotplate in a kitchen in Compiegne, France, its medieval origins unknown. Its owner believed it was a religious artifact, but didn’t know where the painting came from, CNN reported.
The painting was discovered this summer, according to the Washington Post, when the woman had an auctioneer come through her home before she moved out and choose potential items to put up for auction.
- Charles Platiau/Reuters
Experts say they are certain this is an authentic painting.
“The painting was done by the same hand,” art expert Éric Turquin told French newspaper Le Figaro.
Jerome Montcouquil, an art expert at Cabinet Turquin, told CNN they were able to verify the authenticity of the paining by comparing it to others in the series.
“They are all made with the same technique on the same wood panel so you can follow the grain of the wood through the different scenes,” Montcouquil said.”We also used infrared light to be sure the painting was done by the same hand. You can even see the corrections he made.”
The painting will be put up for auction on October 27. It is estimated to be worth $6.59 million (6 million euro), according to CNN.
Two other pieces from the series are on display at London’s National Gallery and the Frick Collection in New York City.
Xavier F. Salomon, the chief curator at the Frick Collection was stunned by the relatively good condition the painting was in, considering its age.
“If you think about it, this thing has been around for several hundred years; it’s probably been through a lot,” he told the Washington Post. “It’s been through the French Revolution. It’s been through several wars. Works of art are more resistant than people think.”
“Still, I wouldn’t recommend anyone putting something that old over a hot plate.”
- Read more:
- A man left his job and sold everything to buy a camera. Now he takes stunning photos of flowers trapped in ice that look like paintings.
- You probably had no idea that there are secret images hidden in these 14 famous works of art
- An artist’s paintings of fish and other animals are so detailed they look just like the real thing
- This French artist transforms famous landmarks into optical illusions