How the most expensive painting in history caused a scandal in the art market

In France, a documentary film about the film “The Savior of the World” by Leonardo da Vinci is being released. Its authors promise to shed light on the political machinations associated with the most expensive painting in the world.

A new feature-length documentary, which will premiere on France 5 on April 13, claims that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman forced the Louvre to lie about the authenticity of a painting he bought to avoid public humiliation, as he spent $450 million on a fake.

French director Antoine Witkin’s film “The Saviour for Sale” is an investigation into how a controversial portrait of Jesus Christ, dubbed the “male Mona Lisa,” was held hostage by backroom deals between France and Saudi Arabia.

The painting “Savior of the World” entered world art history in 2017 when about a thousand collectors, dealers, and spectators gathered in the main auction hall of Rockefeller Center in New York, and the oldest auction house Christie’s sold the painting for a record $450 million, making it the most expensive in the world.

The huge public interest — 120,000 art fans followed the auction through a live Facebook feed-and the incredibly high final bid reflected the extreme rarity of Leonardo da Vinci’s original works. Despite the huge fame and influence of the Italian master, there are currently less than 20 paintings that are believed to have been painted by him, and all of them are part of museum collections. Christie’s called the painting “the greatest artistic discovery of the last 100 years.”

The first doubts about the authenticity of the “Savior of the World” arose when the Louvre Abu Dhabi (an ambitious cultural project designed by Jean Nouvel and received from the great French museum the right to share the name “Louvre” with it for 30 years. — Forbes) suddenly changed his mind to exhibit the painting in September 2018. It has not been shown publicly since.

In France, an investigation was launched because of Islamophobic inscriptions on the wall of a mosque

In France, an investigation was launched because of the appearance of Islamophobic inscriptions on the walls of the Islamic cultural center in Rennes, the Minister of the Interior went to the place.

This is reported by BFM TV.

The cultural center, which unknown people painted with offensive inscriptions, is also a place of prayer for local Muslims.

The worshippers noticed the inscriptions around 6 am when they came for morning prayers. Among them — “No Islamization”, “Long live the King”, “The Prophet Mohammed is a pedophile”, “The Crusades will resume”, “France forever” and others.

“We were shocked by such insults. It’s cruel. Our Muslim community is very upset, “ said Mohammed Zaidouni, President of the Regional Council of Muslims. He added that obviously someone is trying to incite mutual hostility, and against the background of these provocations, it is important to preserve unity and “save the country”.

The mayor of Rennes, Nathalie Appert, said that such acts “have no place in France and Rennes.”

“I express my full support to the residents of the city and especially to the believers who are shocked by these unworthy acts,” she said.

“The numerous anti-Muslim inscriptions on the walls of the Avicenna Mosque in Rennes are unacceptable. I express my full solidarity with the Muslims of our country, “ Interior Minister Geral Darmanin responded, saying that he would go to the site in the afternoon.

The city prosecutor’s office has launched an investigation into the case. Hooligans face up to 30,000 euros in fines or up to 4 years in prison.

Earlier this week, on the night of April 8-9, unknown persons set fire to the doors of a mosque in Nantes. On April 9, a 24-year-old young man with neo-Nazi views was detained in Mana, also in the west of the country, for threatening to attack a local mosque.

In England, one of the richest Britons was killed

One of the wealthiest men in the UK, 83-year-old hotel owner Richard Sutton was killed on the grounds of his estate in the southwest of England.

This is reported by The Times.

The attack was reportedly carried out on the evening of 7 April at his home near the town of Gillingham in Dorset.

Police, who arrived at the scene after a call from a neighbor, found Sutton with a knife wound.

A 60-year-old woman, presumably the wife of an entrepreneur, was also stabbed. She was taken by helicopter to Bristol Hospital and is in critical condition.

Police arrested a 34-year-old man from Gillingham who was known to the victim in connection with the attack.

The police immediately established that the suspect in the murder had left the estate in the direction of London. His car was tracked for almost 200 km and the man was detained in the British capital.

The suspect in the murder was taken to the hospital with minor injuries.

The motive for the murder is still unknown, and an investigation has been launched.

Richard Sutton, with a fortune of 301 million pounds ($415 million), was ranked 435th in the list of the richest people in the UK, which is traditionally published by the Sunday Times newspaper. He owned several hotels.

Recall that in December 2017, billionaire and founder of the pharmaceutical corporation Apotex Barry Sherman and his wife Honey were found dead in Canada. The couple was found in their own home in Toronto.

Arrested Italian officer had limited access to NATO secrets

Italian soldier Walter Biot, who was arrested for spying for Russia, had limited access to classified information about NATO activities.

This was stated by Defense Minister Lorenzo Guerini at a meeting of the parliamentary defense committee, ANSA reports.

“The officer held a position that allowed him to view classified material, but his duties, which did not include command or management activities, allowed him to access evaluation documents and recommendations, but not to direct operations or details of national and NATO capabilities,” Guerini said.

He noted that the Ministry of Defense has not yet received access to the case materials and cannot assess the degree of secrecy of the documents handed over by Biot to the employee of the Russian Embassy.

Recall that on April 1, Italian security forces detained Italian and Russian servicemen as part of an investigation into espionage.

The arrests were made immediately after a secret meeting between the two soldiers. Both were arrested at the scene after handing over classified documents by an Italian officer in exchange for a sum of money.

The Russian military was expelled from Italy because he has diplomatic status.

Biot is married and has four children. One of them has serious health problems and needs constant and expensive care. Perhaps this was the reason why the officer decided to sell the information.

Facebook has ruled out a hacker attack in the latest massive data leak

The American company Facebook conducted an investigation into the causes of the massive data leak of users of the social network. This was stated in the company.

They said that the cause of the leak could not be a hacker hacking Facebook. In a statement, the company said that the management considers as the main version of web scraping.

“It is important to understand that the attackers obtained information not by hacking our systems, but by extracting data from our platform,” the publication says.

Earlier it became known that Zuckerberg’s phone number was publicly available due to a massive leak.