Stolen Klein painting recovered

Maia Is Upset, Klein’s painting

Maia Is Upset, Klein’s painting

A £6,000 painting stolen from a St John's Wood art gallery two years ago has been recovered after a fan of the artist discovered it hanging in a Moroccan shop.

Three of Anita Klein's paintings were bought with a fraudulent credit card from the Boundary Gallery on the last day of her exhibition two years ago.

But earlier this month, police returned to the gallery the largest and most expensive of the three, Maia is Upset, after they seized it from a shop window in Harrow.

Gallery owner Agi Katz had sold the paintings, worth more than £10,000, to a man who had used a fake credit card in May 2009.

"On the last day of the exhibition, a man came in looking for paintings to decorate his restaurant," she said. "It was the end of the day and he said he could take them straight away and so left in a car with the three paintings.

"A couple of weeks later I received a letter from Barclays saying it was a stolen card and I wouldn't be paid the money. I was absolutely devastated."

"It felt horrible," Anita Klein said. "Like my babies had been kidnapped. Maia is Upset is something quite personal to me – it's a painting of my daughter. It was horrible to think someone stole it."

But last month a fan of Ms Klein, who had previously purchased her work, walked past a shop window and saw Maia is Upset hanging in its window.

Surprised by its unusual location and concerned it might be a fake, she contacted Ms Klein through her website and sent her a photo.

"I'm thrilled it's been recovered. It's amazing that a total stranger let me know, " Ms Klein said.

    Last updated: 12:32pm, March 17 2011