A $1,000 reward is being offered to anyone who successfully recovers seven paintings by Seattle artist Whiting Tennis, which were stolen last week when a truck they were in was taken from a hotel parking lot.
The reward is being offered by Tennis’ gallery representative Greg Kucera.
Tennis is scheduled to open a show on Jan. 18 at the Hallie Ford Museum of Art in Salem, Ore. and museum representatives were in town Wednesday to pick up the pieces from Tennis’ North Seattle studio.
They put the paintings in a rental truck, which was stolen overnight from the lot at a Holiday Inn Express where the museum representatives were staying.
Someone spotted the truck in West Seattle early Thursday morning, but didn’t report it to police until the weekend, after news about the stolen truck and artwork ran on TV.
The artworks weren’t found with the truck and it’s assumed that the thieves, wanting only the truck, may have dumped the pieces somewhere. But it’s also possible that the thieves have them and plan to dispose of them at a price, Kucera said.
Kucera puts a value of $65,000 on the paintings – but only, he explains, when sold by a gallery that knows the market and likely clientele for them. For the thieves, he suspects, the accidental artwork haul was probably just a nuisance.
If you think you’ve spotted the paintings, please contact Detective Yamashita (206-684-8945) at the Seattle Police Department and the Greg Kucera Gallery (206-624-0770).