Have you ever thought that a potentially valuable artwork might be hiding in your attic? In the history of art, there are many such original oil paintings and other masterpieces that were once buried under cobwebs and dust piles. They were later on unearthed and sold at millions of dollars!
There are many reasons why such splendid art pieces may have been gone unnoticed for such a long duration. Maybe the artist met with untimely death, they may have not been popular before their masterpiece came out or simply because the artist decided the work was not worthy of being displayed in a museum. Here we give you a sneak peek into some of the most amazing discoveries, from people’s garages, attics, and the most unlikely places.
- Vincent Van Gogh Art Work
Well known for his subtle yet awe-inspiring paintworks of nature, Vincent van Gogh has apparently created another masterpiece known to us, today, as – Sunset at Montmajour. However, it was lost in the attic rubble of the Norwegian industrialist, Christian Nicolai Mustad, who tossed it in the attic after a French Ambassador claimed it to be unauthentic. This master artwork was discovered in the 1970s after the death of the owner.
However, this was not recognized as a Van Gogh work until 2013 when a Van Gogh art historian, after using a new technique to reexamine the painting, claimed that this was indeed the work of the post-impressionist painter. If one closely observes the work, it clearly resembles the type of brush strokes, painting techniques and even the canvas that Van Gogh was famous for.
- A Painting in Line With Judith Beheading Holofernes
A French home in Toulouse, was not aware of this painting hidden in their attic until the homeowner decided to get their leaky faucet fixed! When they discovered it, to their surprise, it looked like it almost aligned with the painting Caravaggio, otherwise known as Michealangelo, had created back in the 1600s – Judith Beheading Holofernes. However, the true origins are still a big debate.
When you take a closer look at the masterpiece, you can actually see the Caravaggio-style strokes of brushes, with the right kind of intricate details set in the perfect lighting. You can clearly observe the energy surging through Judith when she decided to behead the person she seduced in the first place. No wonder painting net worth was deduced to be a whopping $4.2 million!
- The Unconscious Patient by Rembrandt
An original oil painting by Rembrandt would have been sold at a meager amount of $500 to $800 if it weren’t for the art world experts who intervened at the right time to inform of the real oil painting cost. This artwork showing an unconscious patient is one among them.
This painting initially went unnoticed because of the cracked background with a dark and dingy looking discolored portrait of three people. Under all the dust and dirt is the fine art that you simply cannot connect to anybody but the greatest of all Dutch art history, Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn. With the perfect strokes to enhance the features of the subject and perfect lighting and shadow effects, his mastery of the art is shown clearly on the canvas and the renewed oil painting cost does justice to it!
- ‘Untitled’ Jackson Pollock Gouache
This amazing hidden gem was found by an auction manager who upon discovery of Kobe Bryant’s signed poster in a garage of Sun City decided to dig deeper into the treasure trove. The investigation says that the homeowner inherited the painting from the step-sister who in turn was in acquaintance with Clement Greenberg and Hazel Guggenheim McKinley, both with big names in the world of art back then.
Coming to the painting, you will notice how similar it is to Jackson Pollock’s artworks that have become super hit in the world. His unique way of painting, splash and pour painting on a horizontally placed canvas so that he can stroke his brush from every angle, is noticeable on this piece of art!
- Good Old Collection of Arthur Pinajian
The American reclusive artists, Arthur Pinajian, better known for his scores of comical painting illustrations received the name and fame not until 2007 when his cottage was bought by Thomas Schultz and Larry Joseph. They discovered a huge pile of Pinajian’s life worth of paintings stashed in the garage accumulating dust and fungus. Pinajian was unhappy about not receiving the fame he desired to receive when he was alive, so he stored them in the garage away from the world.
However, Schultz and Joseph decided that they would not let the old man’s hard work go in vain. They built a museum that would showcase Pinajian’s artwork to the world and with the help of the renowned art historian Peter Hastings Falk, they brought the name and fame that the works deserved.
- Henry Arthur Mcardle Historic Painting
Henry Arthur Mcardle0 is a well-known artist particularly for helping us picture the Battle of San Jacinto in 1836 with his mural painting of the entire event! It is believed that he had also painted it in a smaller version, which he ended up keeping it with himself when he did not receive the real value of a painting.
However, it resurfaced years after that incident, in the attic of a family in West Virginia, who is believed to be the relatives of Mcardle’s second wife! Although the dust and grime had it looking dull, you cannot ignore the glorious way in which the famous Texan artist caught the battlefield. It then went on to be sold at a price of $334,000.
- Salvador Dali Painting
The antique shops are called so for a reason. One particular such store in Spain had brought a painting about 20 years back at just $200. Little did they know that it was indeed an artwork of none other than Salvador Dali! The reason no one understood this fact before the art piece went under the x-ray and ultraviolet test, is the year 1896, inscribed on it, which is almost eight years before even the artist was born. However, once everyone knew how important the work was, the value of the painting was estimated to be $780,000.
What to Do When You Find a Relic?
You may have just moved into an ancient building or come across fascinating paintwork in an antique shop. Do not ignore it as it may have been around since time immemorial! It could be worth millions or simply a few pennies, but an art piece is always worth preserving. An artist has a hidden emotion attached to his/her paintwork. And for this reason alone, if you find any art, turn it to an art expert to make it immemorial!