Friday, November 24, 2006

Ripped from the Headlines...

If you ever wondered where I get the inspiration for all the fascinating tidbits about forgery, stolen art and restoration, wonder no longer.

It seems like every day there is another incredible story dealing with art, art theft or forgery. Yesterday, I came across another fabulous tale of an art work, missing for 25 years, that not only was stolen and nearly destroyed, now it has been restored and is back on display. There are so many interesting plot turns, it could be a book in itself; but I usually just keep the techniques in my back pocket to use in my novels.

For instance, this news piece highlights the plight of art stolen from small unguarded churches.
This one is in Italy, but it could be anywhere in the world. This story certainly makes finding "lost" art plausible. More fodder for future books! But, perhaps the most exciting part for me is the importance of the restoration process for this piece. Here is what it looked like before it was restored.

Here is what it looked like after the restoration.
Even though it was cut in half, the restorers were able to put it back together. Once again underscoring the importance of copiers. 25 years after it was stolen, it's nearly good as new, maybe better. Georges would have been so proud.

Here is what it looks like installed at the temporary exhibition in London. Just wanted you to get a sense for the size of the work.

You can read all about it. I just may have to include a crazy art fan/mystery lover in one of my upcoming books! I think Arsene would make a wonderful addition to my cast of characters!!

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