Tags: electrician | picasso | trial | stolen | art

Electrician Picasso Trial: Ex-Handyman Accused of Possessing Stolen Art

By    |   Wednesday, 11 Feb 2015 08:23 AM

A French electrician who once did work for Pablo Picasso went on trial this week along with his wife after authorities accused the couple of possessing stolen work from the late world famous artist.

But retired electrician Pierre le Guennec insists that Picasso, who died in 1973, and his wife Jacqueline generously gave him 271 pieces of work, including oil canvases, drawings, and Cubist collages while he was doing electrical work on the home they last lived in before Picasso died, Agence France-Presse reported.

Some of Picasso's heirs, though, have long cast doubt on the electrician's story and some relatives even filed a complaint against le Guennec and his wife in Grasse, France, in 2011. Claude Picasso, who operates the Picasso Administration, led the charge along with other relatives.

"They don't remember a thing, whether they received this gift in 1970, 1971, 1972," Jean-Jacques Neuer, Claude Picasso's lawyer, told AFP of the le Guennecs, noting that the works in dispute were created between 1900 and 1932. "If someone gives you 271 Picasso works, you remember that. You would have to imagine Picasso keeping them for 70 years and all of a sudden wanting to give them away."

Le Guennec told BBC News that he has never hidden the fact that he owned the works of art and he was one who initiated the contact with the Picasso Administration to determine their value, only to have the family turn around and file a complaint against him.

He said he started doing electrical and other handyman work on the Picasso estate in 1970. He claims that Picasso gave him and his wife Danielle 180 lithographs, collages, and paintings, as well as 91 drawings in 1970.

The le Guennecs, both in their 70s, told BBC News they contacted the Picasso Administration to value the works of art in 2010 when they decided to put their affairs in order for their children.

In the days after Pierre le Guennec traveled to Paris to assess the artwork in front the Picasso Administration, the couple was arrested by authorities on suspicion of receiving stolen goods.

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A French electrician who once did work for Pablo Picasso went on trial this week along with his wife after authorities accused the couple of possessing stolen work from the late world famous artist.
electrician, picasso, trial, stolen, art
371
2015-23-11
Wednesday, 11 Feb 2015 08:23 AM
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