Gergely Barki probably expected a quite, uneventful evening as he and his daughter Lola watched “Stuart Little” in 2009. But Barki, a researcher at the Hungarian National Gallery (Magyar Nemzeti Galéria), “nearly dropped Lola from my lap. A researcher can never take his eyes off the job, even when watching a Christmas move at home.” What grabbed Barki’s attention was a long-lost avant garde painting used as a prop in the film. The painting was “Sleeping Lady with Black Vase” by Róbert Berény, a member of the pre-World War I movement Group of Eights. Berény’s painting disappeared in the 1920s but was found in an antique shop in Pasadena by a set designer from Sony Pictures and Columbia Pictures. “Sleeping Lady with Black Vase” will be sold on auction December 13.
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