When art collector Richard L. Weisman's housekeeper showed up for work at his Angelo Drive home in the hills near Benedict Canyon, she knew something was missing from the dining room — 11 Andy Warhols to be exact. She didn't stick around to count what had been taken, though, and fearing the thieves might still be in the home, ran next door to call police. According to the LAPD, a $1 million reward is being offered for information leading to the recovery of the collection, which consists of 10 pictures of American athletes and one of Weisman. The silk-screen paintings include portraits of O.J. Simpson, Kareem Abdul Jabbar and Chris Evert.
Detective Mark Sommer of the LAPD's art theft detail declined to say who is offering the reward or what the collection's estimated worth is, but described the reward as “generous.”
The 11 Warhols are all originals and bulletins about their theft have been issued worldwide.
“It's going to very difficult, if not impossible,” Sommers told the L.A. Weekly, “to sell these legitimately.”
Still, Sommer said, even high-profile stolen art works may elude quick recapture.
“Sometimes they disappear for years,” he said, “and will turn up in an
auction or a private collection. That's when we have to get them back
as stolen property.”
Weisman, the son of noted collector Frederick R. Weisman, and
the nephew of the late Norton Simon, has been collecting art since he
was a young man in the early 1960s. He commissioned Warhol to create
the sports-figure series in the late 1970s.
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