In a scene straight out of the movies, thieves stole two artworks from a gallery in Olympia, Washington over the weekend. Though the art world has seen numerous art thefts from public sculpture to Picasso in the last few months, this theft strikes us as odd and overly complicated.
The burglars broke into Matter Gallery in downtown Olympia through a skylight. They then rappelled down into the gallery and made off with two works of art valued at -- wait for it -- $1,400! "Tribute to the concussed skier" by Jud Turner of Eugene, Ore. valued at $800 and “Horizons II” by Jerry Williamson valued at $600 were taken in the night, though their projected worth has some scratching their heads. Maybe they have a few things in common with these guys.
"Tribute to the concussed skier" is over four feet in diameter while Williamson's "Horizons II" measures over four and a half feet. The thieves arguably could have taken smaller pieces with higher values, leading some to believe it was a matter of taste. "I have far more expensive pieces in the gallery," Jo Gallaugher said to the News Tribune. "The pieces they chose are the pieces that are most often admired by men in their 20s." (Ouch.)
Even though the alarm was disabled due to weather conditions, Gallaugher noted that the burglars put a considerable amount of effort into the theft. The double plexiglass skylight is thick and would have taken a big chunk of time to break through. In addition, most of the art in the gallery was moved to the front of the gallery due to water leaking in the back, further away from the easiest escape route. If we take into account the time and energy involved, in addition to the equipment used, the thieves really took a chance to escape with so little.
What do you think, readers? Will these thieves be caught trying to pawn giant ski-themed art in the next few days?