A video showing the former first lady of the Philippines, Imelda Marcos, with a missing Pablo Picasso painting on the wall behind her has become the cause of much debate. The Picasso resurfaced online during a documented visit by her son, president-elect Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., after his landslide victory in the country’s recent national election.
The artwork is thought by some to be the genuine Picasso,1932 Femme Couchée VI although its authenticity remains unclear. The work is among the more than 200 works of art that Marcos, and her husband, former president Ferdinand Marcos, may have acquired with ill-gotten money while he was in power between 1965 and 1986. It is also one of a group of artworks that was supposed to have been seized by anti-corruption authorities in 2014 in a raid of a family home. So, the question remains if the work taken from the family nine years ago was a fake.
Femme Couchée VI is a well-known portrayal of the artist’s muse, Marie-Thérèse Walter. It is thought to be one of several in private hands, with another version of the work to hit the auction block as part of Sotheby’s Modern Evening Auction.