Norfolk: Rare Faure artwork found in Harleston home

10:26 May 14, 2022

A Norfolk family was amazed to learn that a painting hanging in their hallway for decades could be worth tens of thousands of pounds.

The piece, which depicts the Pantheon in Rome, hung largely unnoticed for 60 years and only attracted attention when the house was wrapped up.

Upon inspection, the family discovered that the artwork was by French artist Jean Victor Louis Faure.

The painting, entitled Market Day, was purchased in 1965 by the owner’s father, Major H Mosse of Mendham Priory, Harleston in Norfolk.

It is expected to fetch up to £50,000 at auction.

The son of Major H. Mosse said: “My earliest memory of this photo was the prominent position he occupied for nearly 60 years in the hallway of the family home, where he witnessed the comings and goings of family life, the many good friends who visited him and even a wedding reception.

The 19th century painting by Jean Victor Louis Faure is of the pantheon in Rome entitled Market Day, The Pantheon, Rome
– Credit: Dreweatts

“For the most part, it was simply seen as an impressive painting occupying a large wall space with the occasional glance to acknowledge its existence.

“It lasted until the end, when the house was evicted and all that was left was the photo that still hung in the same prominent place on the wall, which now stands out even more.

“This piqued my interest in learning a little more about the artist Jean Victor Louis Faure, as of course I never thought of asking my parents about the photo during their lifetime.

“Surprisingly, this turned out to be an important rediscovery of this impressive image I grew up with.”

Measuring 1.21 meters by 1.72 meters in size, the oil painting is expected to be highly sought after by collectors around the world, as artworks by 19th-century painter Faure rarely appear at auction.

Brandon Lindberg, Dreweatts Head of British & European Pictures, said: “It is rare to find a work of this size and age in such pristine and original condition.

“Faure’s work only occasionally hits the market and the most comparable example of this, sold over a decade ago for over £200,000, which is still the record price for the artist.”

The painting will go under the hammer at an Old Master, British and European Art auction in Dreweatts on May 26.

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