Amongst the many intriguing questions raised by the Dorset Socialist Realism Exhibition currently taking place in the Edna Whisky McNightly Room of the Threadbone Gallery, Crendell is that of the provenance of some of the paintings assembled by Curator Valentina-Tereshkova-Lewellyn-Bowlegs. Whilst many are on loan from reputable galleries worldwide, one or two are raising the odd eyebrow amongst the art world's sceptical cognoscenti.
An example of particular interest to Dorset-based sceptical cognescenti with raisable eyebrows is that of Flying Frannie, the portrait of charismatic British channel swimmer, famed Olympian and underwater synchronised dialectician Frannie Blankers-Thrupiece (1917-1985). Said to be on loan from a local business person styling him- or herself Mrs AJT, some believe that the portrait - worth an undisclosed but according to auctioneers Sothebones "tidy" sum - is the property of Threadbone Corporation CEO and CFO Mrs Amanda J Threadbone. It is further alleged by those brave enough to allege such things, that the portrait was acquired by Mrs Threadbone on behalf of AJT Corps (the wholly-owned Thrupiece Organisation / Hornimint Company subsidiary vehicle) from the estate of the late Professor Brian Thrupiece who "was given the portrait as a thank you by his Soviet friends in recognition of his pioneering help with the Soviet Space programme". (see Boris Rez’bovayakost with Clinton Skywalker "Professor Thrupiece and the Space Race" ICJBE 2017) [DOWNLOADABLE HERE].
However matters may not be so straightforward. New photographic evidence derived from experimental covert Russian CCTV Cameras and discovered in the Moscow Archives of the ASICBE [All Soviet Institute for Cultural Bio-ethics] now suggests that the portrait may have been "acquired" by rather different means.
"The original image isn't entirely clear since, in order to produce a really sharp image, the LUBITEL Z1 equipment required higher levels of ambient lighting than was common in the Stalingrad Gallery and Museum at that time", explains Soviet Experimental CCTV Camera expert Yevgeny Aperturik, "but digital enhancement provided by Threadbone Digital Laboratories Technicians is pretty conclusive." "We have established that the subject carrying the picture is definitely male, about 5' 10" and someone who favours a Crockett & Jones brown over-stitched slim-gusset loafer", Mr Aperturik continued, "this means we can say without question that it is Professor Thrupiece himself in the picture". Finger tip experts agree, having established that the subject's right hand (seen top of picture) has four fingers and a thumb - the exact complement of digits known to have been possessed by the distinguished Culinary Bio-ethicist.
Does this mean then that Professor Thrupiece may have taken a shine to the picture and simply taken it down from the walls and walked away with it? "Of course it does", an indignant Mr Aperturik snaps, "are you thick or something?"
The Exhibition may continue until 18 December.
Soviet technology may solve the ongoing mystery of the true provenance of Flying Frannie. CLOCKWISE FROM TOP: The image which experts believe establishes "beyond reasonable doubt" that the portrait Flying Frannie was acquired by Professor Brian Thrupiece by other than legitimate means; the experimental Lubitel 2 (Z1) CCTV camera used to capture the image; Soviet technicians in the receiving studio (a frequent visitor -the BBC's go-to technologist and future Tomorrow's World presenter Raymond Baxter - may be seen front left); the image receiving van and associated equipment which was hidden inside the Stalingrad Gallery & Museum under a large sheet fashioned into a simulacrum of Lenin's tomb. Advanced techniques have managed to extract more information from the image than would have seemed possible at the time. [CLICK on the image above or HERE to reveal the Threadbone Laboratories' miraculous digital enhancement]