Prince Charles has always been very proud of the art collection at Dumfries House.
Apart from one of the world’s most dazzling collections of Chippendale chairs, it’s also home to some of the most famous and most pricey paintings currently in existence.
At least that’s what everyone thought.
Dumfries House is now at the centre of one of the most insane claims of art fakery in royal history.
As if Meghan’s hug/curtsy hybrid wasn’t awkward enough for the family.
Among the fraudulent paintings, you’ll find a Monet, a Dali and a Picasso, all of which were allegedly painted by a man named Tony Tetro in his kitchen in California.
Here’s The Daily Mail:
Tetro claims three of his pieces hung in Dumfries House, including the fake Monet, designed to look like one of the 250 studies the great French impressionist made of the water lilies in the garden at his home in Giverny in Normandy, all blues and greens and shots of lemon.
‘I was very proud of that,’ says Tetro. ‘It was a good Monet.’
There was a striking ‘Dali’, glossy and dark, of the crucified Christ. And finally there was an unmistakeable ‘Picasso’ of people at the seaside, resembling the artist’s 1937 masterpiece On The Beach.
Tetro says that he chose this particular style from Picasso’s cubist period because it’s easier to replicate than the more abstract portraits of faces.
To make things even more suspect, the paintings were on loan from the personal collection of one James Stunt.
In case you need a refresher – Stunt is the former son-in-law of Bernie Eccelstone, and his divorce to Petra made headlines. He’s also known for his extensive car collection, gambling habit, and very colourful vocabulary when referring to his former father-in-law.
The paintings were on a ten-year loan to Dumfries House from Mr Stunt’s extensive collection in an apparent act of philanthropy organised by Prince Charles’s controversial aide Michael Fawcett. The three works in question had been valued for insurance purposes at £104 million in total.
The ‘Monet’ was first identified as likely to be a fake, then suspicions cast on the other two. The Monet was withdrawn from display and sent back to Stunt.
Stunt claims not to know anything about the forgeries, but is also dodgier than a service station pie at 3AM, so we’ll have to wait for the results of the investigation to find out what really happened.
In the interim, the royal family is looking a little silly right now.
And that Monet we mentioned earlier has vanished.
The plot thickens…
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