A valuable painting was found in the high school that gets my property tax dollars.* The work is by Hughie Lee-Smith (1915–1999) and was acquired by the school district for $150 in 1954, the year after he won a prize for painting from the Detroit Institute of Arts. The painting, titled Two Figures and Landscape, is valued at $10,000 now, and has been loaned to the Detroit Institute of Arts, which has a small collection of his works. Over the years, it nearly was discarded as school staff didn’t really know what they had.
Edit 11:35 p.m. 3/14/12: I found a better news article; that’s now at the top of the post. It also has a nice image of the painting. Here’s the link I originally posted.
* As opposed to the high school I attended. I wouldn’t have put it the way I did except for wanting to make it obvious why it was interesting to me. 🙂