“L’Arte Restituita” [Art Returned] is the title of an event that took place at the Italian Embassy in Madrid. During the event, two artworks that had been stolen in Italy and were recently retrieved in Madrid thanks to the collaboration between the Spanish National Police and the Carabinieri’s Command for the Protection of Cultural Heritage were presented.
The two artworks, formally returned on this occasion, had been stolen in 2019 and 2020. They are a 16th-century reliquary bust of Pope Saint Clement in gold- and silver-plated wood attributed to Aniello Stellato, stolen from the Church of Jesus in Lecce, and a 17th-century oil on canvas by an unknown author from Lombardy entitled “Pranzo” [Lunch] belonging to a private collection in Bologna.
Ambassador Riccardo Guariglia, General Roberto Riccardi, Head of the Carabinieri’s Command for the Protection of Cultural Heritage, and the Director General of the Spanish Police, Francisco Pardo Piqueras, took part in the event.
In his speech, Ambassador Guariglia emphasized “the importance of the fruitful collaboration between Spanish and Italian authorities in the fight against crime and, specifically, in the protection and preservation of cultural heritage. Such collaboration is becoming stronger and stronger in recent years.”