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New hope for the Caravaggio

almost fifty years, Caravaggio's "Nativity of Christ was stolen with the St. Lawrence and St. Francis" from the oratorio of San Lorenzo, a small Church belon

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New hope for the Caravaggio

almost fifty years, Caravaggio's "Nativity of Christ was stolen with the St. Lawrence and St. Francis" from the oratorio of San Lorenzo, a small Church belonging to the Franciscan convent in the historical centre of Palermo. The capital paintings, it is almost three meters high and two meters wide, was cut neatly out of the frame. The investigators speak of a razor blade or a carpet knife as the Instrumentalities of such, and take this as an indication that professional art thieves were at work.

This indicates, again, that the painting was not accused of just the pigs and the rats ate, as a former member of the Mafia has claimed, but bearing in mind the inestimable value has been kept with some care, and –Most importantly – with a high probability still exists.

meeting in the Vatican

With the Caravaggio from Palermo, one of the incunabula of European art was lost to history. The "birth of Christ" acting as number two on the FBI list of most-wanted paintings. And in Italy, promising rumours and traces appear again and again.

two months Ago, on 12. October, there were in the Vatican, a meeting that aimed to find the "most wanted paintings in the world". Fernando Musella, an officer in the Carabinieri, said at a press conference confident, because his unit have evidence that Caravaggio's "Nativity" was quite in a Eastern European city's and probably soon will be found.

The painter was the killer

Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio (1571-1610) painted probably in 1609, in Palermo, after he had fled because of a manslaughter that he had committed in Rome, Naples and Malta in the Sicilian capital. Recent research from go, of course, that the painting is created in 1600 in Rome, where Caravaggio lived for 14 years and worked and was the star Painter, for which he is still celebrated today.

In Rome, created masterpieces such as "Judith Holofernes" or "musical beheaded boys 'end", by the way, United until the end of January 2019 in an excellent exhibition at the Musée Jacquemart-André in Paris. You will lead a new style of realism, the representation ends before the eye, the dramatized together with the painting technique of Chiaroscuro, contrasts of Light-dark, the scenes are enormous, an unheard-of effect.

Caravaggio's Christmas picture from Palermo to these top stations: It makes a skilful grouping of the figures and a precise use of light to guide the Christ child to the undisputed center of the display, where the Holy family is the honor. Mary and Joseph both tired – so tired that Mary recognizes her son barely a look. Jesus lies on a white cloth on a haystack, and it seems as if the young man anstosse in the foreground with his foot, the infant-friendly. To the right in the picture of Saint Francis of Assisi and the Saint Lawrence.

The painting hung, a total of 360 years in the oratory of San Lorenzo. In the night from 17. on the 18. In October 1969, it was stolen. A quarter of a century, it was as if the earth had swallowed up it was in the context of various agreement of former mafia members on the topic. Wherein the source position is enormously complicated, you can not assume that the gap and interest-led testimony of the Pentiti, the repentant Ex-mobster, is the truth. Even if these witnesses in other cases, investigators led to bosses to track important mafia.

In poor condition?

In 1996, the curtain of silence was ripped open in the matter of Caravaggio, for the first time, as the mafia informant Francesco Marino Mannoia, in the Andreotti process confessed that he was one of the thieves who had stolen the painting in order from a buyer. This is collapsed, as he saw how bad the condition of the picture was, and I rejected it. It had been hidden then– Mannoia never said where. Later it turned out that he meant a different painting.

in 2009, designed by Gaspare Spatuzzo the theory that the image had been destroyed in the 80s, and possibly by rats and pigs-eaten in the sun in a barn on Sicily.

In may 2017 Gaetano Grado gave to the Italian anti-mafia Commission, on the record, the picture was in the possession of the Cosa Nostra bosses Stefano mafia actually and Gaetano Badalamenti (who died in 2004 in prison in the USA). Rosy Bindi, until recently the President of this Commission, then spoke in February of 2018, a breakthrough: they believe that the image was smuggled to Switzerland, and of a now deceased art dealer in Lugano, pieces have been cut so that it could better be sold.

Charles Hill, who had already tracked down Edward Munch's "The scream" for Scotland Yard, said recently to the Guardian that he believe that the paintings still exist. But only will occur when the last had been taken by the big mafia bosses, Matteo Messina Denaro,. Perhaps in Sicily or in Eastern Europe?

(editing Tamedia)

Created: 20.12.2018, 17:49 PM

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