In similar fashion to Leonardo da Vinci’s Salvatore Mundi’s painting, a long-lost oil on canvas attributed to Caravaggio resurfaced in 2014 in Toulouse, France.
Paris-based expert in Old Masters, Eric Turquin affirms that it’s a real painting by the controversial Italian painter and provided more details on how it was found. “This is the greatest painting I’ve ever found,” said Turquin. “It’s very violent. It’s almost unbearable. But he’s an artist who embodies the text — he makes the text living. The work had been lying against a wall of an attic among the farmhouse owner’s old clothes, family antiques and crockery.”
Thieves who broke into the space a few years earlier than its discovery, left the painting behind as they daubed it “inadequate and worthless”, said auctioneer Marc Labarbe who found the work in the first place before calling Turquin for an expertise.
The second version of Judith Beheading Holofernes (circa 1607), as it is titled, is on view in London at Colnaghi until 9th March before being auctioned on 27 June at the Grains Hall of Toulouse. It could fetch around £100m.