Painting for sale on dark web

One of two Lindauer paintings stolen in a brazen heist earlier this year has appeared for sale for $1 million on the dark web.

The Gottfried Lindauer paintings Chief Ngatai-Raure and Chieftainess Ngatai-Raure were taken from a Parnell art gallery in a ram-raid in April.

Dr Ngarino Ellis, who is a lecturer in Art Crimes at Auckland University, said she was contacted by a UK journalist who had discovered the Chief Ngatai-Raure painting on the ‘White Shadow’ market, a dark web auction site.

She said the screen shots of the auction were very concerning.

The paintings had been taken out of their frame and had a post-it-note with the date stuck to the front.

Dr Ellis said could be an indication the paintings were genuine, as most true art pieces were sold without a frame, so buyers can see the edges of the canvas. She was stunned at the audacity of the seller, who clearly states the paintings were stolen, and she said that means whoever buys it cannot claim to have been unaware of its origins.