Saturday, November 24, 2007
A painting stolen 20 years ago then found lying in a pile of rubbish on a New York City street has sold at auction for just over $1m (£484,000). The 1970 painting Tres Personajes (Three People) by Mexican artist Rufino Tamayo was taken from a warehouse where the owners had placed it while moving. It was found by Elizabeth Gibson as she took her morning walk four years ago on Manhattan's Upper West Side. After discovering the painting's value, she returned it to its original owner.
Elizabeth Gibson said she was drawn to the painting when she spotted it on the street. "I know nothing of modern art but it didn't seem right for any piece of art to be discarded like that," she said.
It hung on a wall in her home for several months before a friend suggested it might be valuable. An internet search revealed that the missing painting had been the subject of an appeal for information on the Antiques Roadshow TV programme.