Recently, this artwork was politically classified to be thrown away until a sharp-eyed collector saved it from the trash. What probably happened, over the last 100 years, was that after a small rip had been repaired poorly, then again, and then another rip… and finally, the damage and the dirty surface made it fit for “long term storage” where it was forgotten… until someone started to clear things out.
This photo shows a detail of the painting during cleaning of the overpaint and discolored varnish revealing exquisite details and artistic quality. We’ll keep you posted as we resurrect the gorgeous woman in a white dress enjoying the good life.
This painting has a great story I’m sure you’ll find interesting, even in its abbreviated form:
Painted in 1903, a Russian artist from St. Petersburg sent this painting to America to be exhibited in 1904 at the St. Louis International Exhibition to celebrate the Louisiana Purchase. An art dealer gathered paintings from his country’s best artists to expose their artwork to American buyers but once the paintings were in the United States complications arose. The paintings were shown but the dealer refused to past the custom’s duties. So, after the expo, the paintings were held in limbo for a number of years until they were auctioned off, by Presidential decree. This painting ended up at the De Young Museum, then the Oakland Museum of Art and then to several high end collectors, until it landed unceremoniously buried in stuff in a warehouse sometime in the 1960’s we assume.
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