A missing bronze Buddha statue was stolen from the Barakat art gallery in Los Angeles. The statue worth IDR 15.3 billion was taken away at around 03.45 local time.
The 1.2 meter tall and 113 kilogram work has been targeting the precious object for some time. In CCTV cameras circulating, the statue acquired by the gallery owner more than 55 years ago seems to have been a target for a long time.
“I previously kept it in my yard, when I moved it to this gallery, I put it in the back yard of the gallery for everyone to admire and enjoy,” said the owner of the gallery, Fayez Barakat, as reported by various sources, Tuesday (26/9) /2023).
He emphasized that there was no similar Buddha statue in his collection. The theft may have been planned because of the statue’s prominent location.
“No other collection was stolen, only the Buddha statue,” he stressed.
Gallery director Paul Henderson said it was the first theft in 12 years of operation. “This statue is rare and is not available in the market anywhere,” he said.
“It’s 1.2 meters tall and made of hollow cast bronze. It’s an amazing piece of work. It’s really an aesthetically pleasing statue and it’s a shock to know it’s gone,” he said.
In addition to Los Angeles, Barakat art galleries are also located in London, Hong Kong and Seoul. In Los Angeles, this gallery houses a collection of African wood carvings, Japanese terracotta tiles and other wood sculptures.