Picasso, Matisse works stolen in Paris

13:21, May 21, 2010      

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Five paintings by famous artists such as Pablo Picasso and Henri Matisse, worth more than half-a-billion euros, were stolen from the Paris Museum of Modern Art. (Agencies)

Five paintings by famous artists such as Pablo Picasso and Henri Matisse, worth more than half-a-billion euros, were stolen from the Paris Museum of Modern Art, Paris police announced on Thursday morning.

The five valuable canvases include Le pigeon aux petits-pois (The Pigeon with the Peas) by Pablo Picasso, La Pastorale (Pastoral) by Henri Matisse, L'olivier pres de l'Estaque (Olive Tree near Estaque) by Georges Braque, La femme a l'eventail (Woman with a Fan) by Amedeo Modigliani, Nature-mort aux chandeliers (Still Life with Chandeliers) by Fernand Léger.

Video surveillance cameras captured footage of a single masked intruder entering the museum, located in the city's tourist-friendly 16th arrondissement across the Seine River from the Eiffel Tower.

According to the French police, since the stolen paintings are too famous, they are hard to sell even on the black market. No collector is stupid enough to buy a painting that he can't show to other collectors, and or would send him to prison, police said.

The thief or thieves may be hired by some unscrupulous collectors who collect them by themselves but not sell to others. Just because of this, the case is difficult to detect.

Since last year, there have several paintings been stolen including Picasso’s sketches worth 3 million Euros, more than 30 artworks by Rousseau and Picasso and Degas' painting "Choir."

By People's Daily Online

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