One of the richest museums in France, the Museum of Fine Arts in Rouen has one fewer painting among its collections. Since May 23, the Rouen institution has deplored the theft of a canvas – little known – by the Flemish painter Otto van Veen, known as Otto Venius (1556-1629), who was Rubens’ main teacher.
The stolen canvas, titled Wisdom never escapes time or Virtue escapes time, is estimated at 30,000 euros.
The absence of any sign of a break-in gives rise to fears of subtraction during the opening hours of the museum. The small size of the painting – 15 x 20 cm – certainly facilitated its concealment by the perpetrator (s) of the theft.
The investigation, entrusted to the specialized service for works of art of the territorial direction of the judicial police (DTPJ) of Rouen, will now have to shed light on the exact circumstances of the theft.