Sometimes there are wedding presents, and then there are wedding presents!
Formerly thought to be lost, a painting from Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema, one of the top artists from the Victorian period (a Neoclassical painter), has finally seen the light of day again, after it was brought out of storage by the great-great-grandson of the man for whom the painting was originally made.
A wedding gift, the painting depicts the etcher Leopold Löwenstam, who was a close friend and colleague of Alma-Tadema. The painting was a wedding present to Löwenstam and his wife, who also happened to be the nanny for Alma-Tadema's children.
According to commentary from sources at the BBC, and those working on the Antiques Roadshow, the picture has been described as one of the “best pictures we have ever seen on the Roadshow in its entire history, and is believed to have received one of the show’s highest valuations." Top picture expert, Rupert Mass went on to say that Alma-Tadema was quite likely the most valuable Victorian artist today, and that his pictures had inspired such individuals as the great American film-maker Cecil B. DeMille.
The picture was originally exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1884, and later went on tour again in Liverpool around 1913. However, it is not believed to have been displayed since then, until brought forth by Löwenstam's great-great-grandson. Upon hearing the story behind the painting, and its current value, Löwenstam's descendant said that he had no intention of selling it at the moment, and instead, had lent the work to the Fries Museum in the Netherlands where Alma-Tadema was born, for a scheduled exhibition of his works later this year.
Initial estimates from art experts from around the world have put the value of the painting between $350,000 and $550,000 US Dollars.
- A.I.A. Staff Writers
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