Italian police have found a 500-year-old copy of Salvator Mundi, a famous Leonardo da Vinci painting. The portrait of Jesus as ‘Savior of the world’ has been returned to the museum in Naples where it belongs.
That didn’t even know it had been stolen.
The work was found in a bedroom closet in an apartment in Naples, the 36-year-old owner arrested on suspicion of being stolen.
The painting made with oil paints hangs typically in the Doma museum collection in the San Domenico Maggiore church in Naples. But because the museum has been closed for months due to the corona measures, no one had noticed the missing. The room in which the work hung had not been open for three months.
It is a copy of Leonardo’s famous artwork that changed hands for $ 450 million in 2017, and the highest amount ever paid for a painting. Some connoisseurs also doubt the authenticity of that painting, which is located in the Louvre Abu Dhabi. The early 16th-century copy is attributed to the artist Giacomo Alibrandi.
“The painting was found on Saturday thanks to brilliant and diligent police work,” said a prosecutor in Naples. It’s back in the museum. Police are now investigating how it was stolen as no signs of burglary have been found. Justice suspects that the work has been stolen by order of an organization dealing in art.