Lifestyle & Belief

Renoir painting from flea market stolen from Baltimore museum

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Flea markets are great places to buy cheap hats, books, clothes and, for one Virginia woman, Renoir masterpieces.

Credit:

KAREN BLEIER

A Renoir painting found and bought for $7 at a US flea market is allegedly the same one stolen from the Baltimore Museum of Art in 1951.

The Washington Post reported the Potomack Company auction house recently said it would sell the small painting by French impressionist Pierre-Auguste Renoir but has canceled the sale after an investigation by the newspaper.

The FBI has also launched an investigation into the matter, the Post said.

As GlobalPost reported, a woman recently bought of box items at a West Virginia flea market for $50 and thought she may have mistakenly purchased Renoir's “On the Shore of the Seine” masterpiece.

The Washington Post found an old document at the Baltimore Museum of Art revealed that the tiny landscape, "measuring 51 / 2 by 9 inches was stolen Nov. 17, 1951" but the mystery remains as to how it ended up at the flea market.

“Obviously, we take our responsibility for our collections and the things entrusted to us very seriously. We have to do more research and get to the bottom of the real story, and we’re still in the midst of that process,” BMA Director Doreen Bolger told the Post.

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