Clean-up at NY's Met uncovers 'portrait by Spanish master Velazquez'

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London, September 11 (ANI): The Metropolitan Museum of Art in the United States has learnt that an old portrait of a moustached man, which was assumed to be a cheap imitation, is actually a genuine work by the 17th century Spanish master Velazquez.

The portrait has a man in his 30s, dressed in black and posed in a three-quarter view.

It was first thought to be a Velazquez self-portrait, when it entered the museum's collection in 1949.

And 30 years later, experts claimed that it had been knocked up in a workshop by one of his followers.

"What was not realised was the degree to which unnecessarily heavy retouching and a thick, discoloured varnish obfuscated the qualities of the picture, making a proper evaluation impossible," the Telegraph quoted a Met spokesman as saying.

Diego Velazquez who was court painter to Philip IV of Spain even had influence on 20th century artists Francis Bacon and Pablo Picasso.

He is known for his portraits of court life, as well as equestrian and mythological themes.

His painting titled "Santa Rufina" had fetched massive 17.02million dollars when it was auctioned at Sotheby's in London in 2007. (ANI)

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