More than 400 of Pablo Picasso's sketches and watercolors have gone missing, the victim is Catherine Hutin-Blay— daughter of Pablo Picasso's second wife—and the prime suspect is a handyman named Freddy Munchenbach. This, folks, is your highbrow art crime of the day.
Art heists of late have been sort of demure compared to the Hutin-Blay scheme. Take the casual spiriting away of a $500,000 Dalí on the Upper East Side last June or the $250,000 Rembrandt gone missing from a California hotel in 2011. Sure, each one nabbed a piece more expensive than some homes, but neither heist involved a relative of the artist. Nor did the thieves steal 400 pieces of art from the greatest painter of the 20th century.
Hutin-Blay, according to The Age, "inherited a vast collection of Picasso's work on the death of her mother in 1986 and still owns the Chateau de Vauvenargues near Aix-en- Provence in the south of France," where Picasso and his second wife, Hutin-Blay's mother, are buried. But her collection is down some 400 pieces because of thefts she believes occurred between 2005 and 2007, and reported in 2011 after she was alerted that a couple of Picasso originals had gone up for auction.