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‘Picking Peas’: the story of the lost and found Pissarro

Originally commissioned by Vincent Van Gogh’s brother, Theo, French impressionist painter Camille Pissarro’s ‘La Récolte des Pois’, also known as ‘La Cueillette des Pois’ (‘Picking Peas’), was thought to be lost for three-quarters of a century.

However, as we learn in this episode of Sotheby’s Stories, the painting, which depicts an idyllic scene of six pea harvesters, was rediscovered after being seized from collector George Bauer by the Nazi regime in 1943.

One of only a small number of paintings created by Pissarro in 1887, over a century later, in June 2018, a Paris appeals court ruled that Philadelphia-based collectors Bruce and Robbi Toll must return the gouache work to Bauer’s heirs.

Now, the Bauer family estate is set to sell the work, at a Sotheby’s auction later this month, with the painting expected to fetch a price ranging between €1.2 million-€1.8 million ($1.4 million-$2.1 million).

View the original video here.

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