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Gauguin masterpiece to leave Basel art museum

Gauguin's famous painting Nafea faa ipoipo? (When will you marry?), worth millions, will leave the Basel Kunstmuseum Keystone

Eighteen works of art belonging to the Rudolf Staechelin Family Trust, including Paul Gauguin’s masterpiece “When will you marry?”, have been withdrawn from the Kunstmuseum Basel, spokesman Ruedi Staechelin confirmed on Thursday.

The Staechlin family sold Gauguin’s famous painting, known in Tahitian as “Nafea faa ipoipo?”, for an undisclosed sum to an undisclosed buyer. Beginning on Friday, the work – painted in Tahiti in 1892 – will be displayed in a major Gauguin exhibit at the Beyeler FoundationExternal link’s museum in Riehen outside of Basel.

The 18 works belonging to the Staechelin Family Trust had been on loan to the Kunstmuseum Basel since 2002. The family cancelled the contract as a result of the museum’s closure for renovations which will last until April 2016.

Although Ruedi Staechelin did not rule out the return of the other paintings to the museum after the renovations, negotiations are currently under way with other unnamed museums.

“When will you marry?” and other works from the Staechelin and Im OberstegExternal link collections will travel in March to Madrid and in October to Washington.

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SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR