ABC News has some more on the thefts last week of Picasso’s Minotaur, Drinker and Women (1933), pictured here, and The Painter and the Model (1963). Also taken were works by two Brazilian artists, Women at the Window (1926) by Emiliano Augusto Cavalanti de Albuquerque Melo, and Couple (1919) by Lasar Segall. All four works were stolen from the Pinacoteca Museum by 3 men who paid their entrance fee, took the elevator to the second floor, drew their weapons and forced the guards to tell them where the four works were located.
Marcelo Araujo told the Folha De Sao Paulo newspaper that the security was appropriate, “In cases of armed robbery we can’t run the risk of resisting, because there could be unforeseeable consequences for the employees and for the public.” That is probably correct, and there is an inherent tension between keeping galleries an open space for the public versus protecting against armed robbery. Such robberies seem to be taking place with regularity in Sao Paulo though, which may make displaying art to the public more difficult there.