LACMA Purchases Miguel Cabrera Masterpiece
Lots of people have a stray fuzz ball or two kicking around under the sofa, or perhaps a missing sock to match the lonely one at the bottom of the laundry hamper.
Christina Jones Janssen had something more valuable under the couch in her Bay Area home — a lost and extremely rare masterpiece of 18th century painting, neatly rolled up and remarkably well-preserved.
She suspected it might be important, and her sleuthing led to what art experts are calling one of the most important discoveries of Mexican Colonial art in recent memory.
The picture is a long-lost work by Miguel Cabrera (circa 1715-1768), the greatest painter of his era in Mexico City, capital of the Viceroyalty of New Spain. His prolific workshop produced religious and secular art for the Catholic Church and the social elite.