Stolen Matisse resurfaces

22:12, Jan 08 2013
Matisse painting
FOUND: Le Jardin, a 1920 oil on canvas by Henri Matisse.

A painting by Henri Matisse has been recovered a quarter of a century after it was stolen from a Swedish museum by a sledgehammer-wielding thief.

The Art Loss Register, which tracks stolen, missing and looted art, says Le Jardin was found when a British dealer checked the picture against the group's database before selling it.

Christopher Marinello, a lawyer working with the London-based register, said British dealer Charles Roberts said he had acquired the painting from an elderly collector in Poland.

Marinello said the painting, valued at about US$1 million, would be returned to Stockholm's Moderna Museet.

The painting was snatched from the gallery in May 1987.

Marinello said it was up to Swedish police to decide whether to try to track down the thieves.

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AP