Museum Security Network

Walthamstow, UK: Thieves strike at art trail

WALTHAMSTOW: Thieves strike at art trail

1:55pm Monday 13th September 2010

• By Daniel Binns »

GRAND European galleries housing works by Van Gogh and Picasso are the usual targets of art thieves – but now they have struck in Walthamstow too.

On Saturday night, as the week-long E17 Art Trail drew to a close, two men are believed to have launched a daring grab-and-dash heist from an exhibition at the Queens Arm pub in Orford Road, making off with an artwork by Leytonstone photographer Kitty Brown.

The piece – which was on sale for an asking price of £50 – was a framed photograph of a swimming dog wearing a bright pink waterproof protective headwrap.

Ms Brown captured the unusual image of the poorly pooch, named Lola, while the animal was undergoing treatement for a problem with her back legs at a hydrotherapy pool in Chingford.

Ms Brown, 40, said she was sad about the theft, but added that she also took it as a compliment.

She said: “I am a bit upset and I think it’s a real shame as I really liked the picture.

“But in a way it’s quite flattering – and I hope whoever has her, enjoys her.”

However there was confusion when Ms Brown put up signs the next day in Walthamstow Village appealing for help in tracking the picture down.

She said: “We put up some posters which were, in effect, a picture of a missing picture of a dog, so some people assumed it was part of the art trail and was a work of art itself.”

There have been no other reported thefts from the trail, which came to a close otherwise successfully yesterday.

Ms Brown is hoping she can retrieve her artwork and the pub has offered a reward of a free pint and packet of crisps to anyone who can help bring it back to its owner.

However in response to popular demand the exhibition of photographs, which is entitled ‘Merry England’ and features shots of everyday life, will continue to run in the pub for the next two weeks.

Anyone with any information about the missing piece can contact Kitty Brown via the Guardian by emailing or by contacting the pub.

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