Ovation Investigates the World’s Biggest Art Mysteries in New Original Series - ‘Raiders of the Lost Art’

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Santa Monica, CA – August 6, 2014 - Throughout the decades, incredible works of art and priceless treasures have vanished from museums, galleries and even private homes, never to be seen again. On August 30, Ovation, America’s only arts network, will present the television premiere of Raiders of the Lost Art, a new original series that explores the murky details and puzzling mysteries around the disappearance of some of the world’s most-valuable art.

Over the course of six riveting, one-hour episodes, Raiders of the Lost Art delves into art mysteries that have perplexed investigators, law enforcement and art experts for decades. Through re-enactments, rare archival footage and expert commentary, viewers will see how these treasures were looted, stolen or seemingly vanished into thin air. Some art works have been recovered. But many more are still waiting to be found.

Raiders of the Lost Art premieres Saturday, August 30th at 7PM ET, only on Ovation.

Here are some episode highlights:

 -  “Tainted Trove: Gurlitt’s Hidden Collection” – Premieres Saturday, August 30 at 7 p.m. ET.  Munich, Germany, 2013 – a huge collection of missing masterpieces was discovered in the home of Cornelius Gurlitt, son of the Nazi-era art dealer, Hildebrand Gurlitt. Commissioned by the Third Reich, his father collected art for Hitler’s Fuhrermuseum and managed to save the modern art works the Nazis deemed “degenerate.” This episode explores how Hildebrand Gurlitt acquired works by Matisse and Picasso and kept them hidden from the world for more than a half century.

-  “Fabergé Egg” – Premieres Saturday, September 6 at 7 p.m. ET.  Each year, Carl Fabergé made a one-of-a-kind Easter egg for the Russian royal family. When Carl was forced to flee Russia during the revolution, eight of these Imperial eggs went missing. It was believed that these priceless gems were gone forever until an unsuspecting scrap dealer realized he had been holding onto something worth more than its weight in gold! With one of the elusive eggs recently recovered, could the other seven have possibly survived the chaos of 1917?

-  “Posthumous Genius: Vincent Van Gogh” – Premieres Saturday, September 13 at 7 p.m. ET.  When Van Gogh died, his work was completely unknown. In fact, the average sale of a painting was around $15.  His work became some of the most sought after and expensive thanks to his sister-in-law Johanna, whose family connection to prestigious art circles helped her become a prominent art dealer. By maintaining the rarity of Van Gogh’s work, Johanna turned a starving artist into a household name. Now that a new painting has been discovered, it begs the question: what other Van Goghs lie in wait?                                                                                

-  “Monuments Men” – Premieres Saturday, September 20 at 7 p.m. ET.  During World War II, as they tore through Europe, the Nazis plundered some of the world’s greatest works of art. Meanwhile, an Allied special task force, code named “The Monuments Men,” managed to track down the stolen art and save what they could. This episode reveals what masterpieces the Allies managed to save from destruction and possible works that may never be seen again.

-  “Stealing the Mona Lisa” – Premieres Saturday, September 27 at 7 p.m. ET.  In Paris 1911, a mysterious figure entered the galleries of the Louvre and managed to steal the Mona Lisa right off the wall. Vincenzo Peruggia, an Italian immigrant laborer (not Pablo Picasso, as some suspected) kept the painting in his apartment for nearly two years. In this episode, viewers learn how he might have gotten away with it for so long and whether other works by Leonardo da Vinci might still be out there somewhere.

-  “Forging Vermeer” – Premieres Saturday, October 4 at 7 p.m. ET.  For 200 years, no one knew Vermeer. He lived and painted in anonymity and, until 1842, many of his paintings were attributed to other artists. The mystery surrounding the painter and his life has driven the art world (and some organized crime groups) to go to extremes to obtain the Dutch painter’s work.  But how much is yet to be found?

“This compelling original series will give viewers a rare glimpse into the hidden art world like only Ovation can,” said Scott Woodward, senior VP, programming and production, Ovation. “From the Hermitage to the Louvre and every distinguished art gallery in between, Raiders of the Lost Art transports us back in time and around the world to explore the baffling disappearances of renowned masterpieces, forgeries that fooled top art experts, and the trails of clues left behind by thieves, co-conspirators and artists themselves.”

Raiders of the Lost Art is an Ovation original, coproduced by Ovation and 3DD Productions.

The series begins on August 30 at 7 p.m. ET.

For more information, please visit:  http://www.ovationtv.com/series/raiders-of-the-lost-art/

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