DETROIT (AP) — A federal appeals court has ordered a Detroit museum to hold onto an 1888 painting by Vincent van Gogh amid a Brazilian collector's dispute with the museum over the painting.
Wednesday's order from the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati comes days after U.S. District Judge George Caram Steeh in Detroit dismissed a lawsuit filed by collector Gustavo Soter's art brokerage company, The Detroit News reported.
The suit claims Soter bought the painting of a woman with a book, titled "The Novel Reader," in 2017 for $3.7 million, but that a "third party" took possession of the artwork and it has been missing for nearly six years.
The oil-on-canvas painting, which the suit says is worth more than $5 million, was part of the Detriot Institute of Arts' recent "Van Gogh in America" exhibition.
Steeh said in his Jan. 20 ruling that the painting could not be seized because it was protected by a federal law granting immunity to foreign artwork on display in the United States.
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